Monthly Archives: March 2016

VITAMIN D3 or D2

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D3-50,000 IU (cholecalciferol) prescribed by many doctors and dispensed by many pharmacies.D3-50-Prescriptions

D3-50,000 Often prescribed as if prescription product.  Also available in lower doses.

D2 50,000 Available as a prescription product.   

Vitamin D3 – What is it?

D3-vitamin-or-d2-vitaminVitamin D3 is also known as “cholecalciferol.” Vitamin D3, other than that made in the skin, is mainly derived from sheep’s lanolin. Lanolin is the fatty-wax-substance secreted by the sebaceous glands of the sheep’s wool. Processors advance the lanolin through a five-step process to make 7-Dehydocholesterol (“pre-Vitamin D3”).  Next, the pre-Vitamin D3 is irradiated to produce Vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol).  This is the same reaction that is used by human skin to manufacture vitamin D3 from sunlight.

Vitamin D2 – What is it?

biotech

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Vitamin D2 is also known as “ergocalciferol.”  Ergocalciferol is a fungus or yeast-derived product. It is typically produced synthetically from radiating a compound (ergosterol) from the mold ergot. Vitamin D2 was first produced in the early 1900 by exposing foods to ultraviolet light. This process was patented and licensed to pharmaceutical companies.

D2 vs. D3 – which is better?

In a recent study, the potency of D2 50,000 IU and D3 50,000 IU were assessed using healthy volunteers over a twenty-eight-day investigative study.

“The end results of the study showed that Vitamin D2 potency is less than one-third that of Vitamin D3. Physicians resorting to use of vitamin D2 should be aware of its markedly lower potency and shorter duration of action relative to vitaminD3.”[i]

In another study: “D3 is approximately 87% more potent in raising and maintaining serum 25(OH)D [25-hydroxy Vitamin D] concentrations and produces a 2- to 3-fold greater storage of vitamin D than does equimolar D2. For neither was there evidence of sequestration in fat, as had been postulated for doses in this range.

vitamin-d3-cholecalciferol-50,000-iu-vegetable-capsulesGiven its greater potency and lower cost, D3 should be the preferred treatment option when correcting vitamin D deficiency.”[ii] For the research referenced please see links i and ii.

After reading the research, why would you choose D2 over D3?

For professional and pharmacy stocking information, please click here.[iii]


[i] Vitamin D2 Is Much Less Effective than Vitamin D3 in Humans

[ii] Vitamin D3 Is More Potent Than Vitamin D2–heaney v D3 more potent than D2 JECM 2010

[iii] Wholesale – Distributor Promo _6-21-16_Layout 1