Jim Breed has been taking large amounts of Vitamin D3 (5000-10000 IU/day) since 2008. Yet when he switched to taking it in the morning, his sleep quickly improved. Here’s what happened:
I’m a married man, 230-240 pounds over the past 4 years, born in 1957, and I work as an engineer for the Department of Energy in an office. I try to do cardio for thirty minutes four times a week.
In 2008, I began taking 5-10000 IU Vitamin D3 daily. My blood tests:
October 2009 50 ng/ml
August 2010 65 ng/ml
May 2012 84 ng/ml
My doctor said to reduce my intake from 10000 IU to 5000 IU when it hit 84, as he prefers levels under 80.
Prior to beginning the morning D, I took one 5000 IU gel cap two times during the day. I usually took my supplements at breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I might take 5000 at lunch and 5000 at dinner. Since I started taking Vitamin D in 2008, I have not missed a day of work due to illnessk. This is unusual. Throughout grade school, high school, college, and my work for the Federal Government, I have never had a complete year where I wasn’t sidelined by some cold, flu, what have you for an unscheduled absence due to sickness
In November 2011, I started reading posts on your blog about morning D affecting sleep. I tried taking my Vitamin D in the morning — upon awakening, which is usually 6:30 am. Definitely by 8:30 am. Within a week, I noticed two things:
1. I started sleeping all night without waking in the middle of the night. For years, I have had trouble sleeping throughout the night. I usually slept with earphones so I could listen to the radio around 2 am for an hour until I fell asleep again. Once I woke up, it took a lot to get back to sleep. Now, I may stir for a few minutes or get up to use the toilet, but I fall back to sleep very quickly.
2. My bed times became more consistent and earlier. I married my wife in 2005. It had been a consistent source of tension between us that she liked to go to bed earlier than me (10:30 pm for her 11:30 for me). I wasn’t tired. Midnight would have been better for me. Since the morning D, I have consistently beaten my wife to bed. I am just done for the day and ready to go to sleep by 10:30. This is truly a change for the better.
I did not expect these results. I reasoned that since my blood levels were so high, when I took D would not matter. I was surprised to be wrong.
I also found that an unexpected reduction in my dosage screwed up my sleep. This was really exciting. My wife and I traveled to Livermore, CA from our home in KS. She gave me some travel supplement packs that she makes up and it did not have our usual brand of D. Here is how the trip went.
- Friday-fly to CA 10,000 iu at waking; great sleep in hotel room
- Saturday-travel D; great sleep in hotel room
- Sunday-travel D; great sleep in hotel room
- Monday-travel D; great sleep in hotel room
- Tues-travel D; restless sleep in hotel room. I heard the A/C unit. The bed was uncomfortable. I fell asleep during a meeting with the lights down at work
- Wed-travel D; terrible sleep in hotel room. In a meeting at the lab I make a mental note to ask my wife what the travel dosage is.
It turns out that the travel dosage was 1000 IU. I thought it was just a different brand. Definitely, 1000 IU was not enough. I immediately went to Walgreens and got some 5000 IU gelcaps and began taking the 10000 IU upon waking. It took about a week to re-establish my previous restful sleep.
Reducing my dosage from 10000 IU to 5000 IU did not disturb my restful sleep patterns- When my doctor had me cut back to 5000 IU at the beginning of May, I didn’t notice any decrease in restful sleep. If anything, it seems to be better than when I was taking 10000 IU.