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Dr. Michael Holick

Calcium supplements all but useless without adequate vitamin D from sunlight exposure: interview with Dr. Michael Holick, author of The UV Advantage

Saturday, January 01, 2005
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger
Editor of NaturalNews.com (See all articles...)
Tags: Dr. Michael Holick, vitamin D deficiency, calcium


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The following is part seven of an eight-part interview with Dr. Michael Holick, author of "The UV advantage" and one of the world's most respected authorities on vitamin D and the health benefits of natural sunlight. His work can be found at www.UVadvantage.com. Be sure to print out the vitamin D myths, facts and statistics page summarizing the key points of this interview.

Adams: In your book you talk about the link with calcium and calcium assimilation. How important is that for people to understand?

Dr. Holick: Well, it's critically important for people to realize that even if they have an adequate amount of vitamin D, if they don't have any calcium around, the vitamin D can't have the desired effect on bone health without being able to get enough calcium out of the diet and to put it into the bloodstream which will eventually get to your bones. So, making sure that you have adequate calcium intake is very important. And the recommendation by the Institute of Medicine (and I was on this committee back in 1997) is that if you're a teenager, 1300mg a day of calcium, for adults ages 18-50 it's 1000mg of calcium and 51+ years it's 1200mgs of calcium for both men and women.

Adams: And you mention that you have to have calcium in your system for vitamin D to work - is the opposite also true? You've got to have vitamin D for the calcium to be effective?

Dr. Holick: Oh, no question about it. If you are deficient in vitamin D, you absorb on average 10-15% of the calcium that's in your diet. If you’re sufficient in vitamin D, if you have adequate sun exposure or adequate intake of vitamin D, you absorb about 30% of the calcium in your diet. During pregnancy and lactation, and during growth spurts, the body responds appropriately by actually increasing that efficiency up to 80%.

Adams: So the normal level is 30%.

Dr. Holick: 30% for healthy adults, yes.

Adams: So a person who's taking, let's say coral calcium supplements, if they're not getting sunshine or vitamin D to go with it, their absorption is halved.

Dr. Holick: Yeah, exactly, and it's really of little benefit.

Adams: That's fascinating. Once again showing that there's no single magic pill, you have to be healthy across the board.

Dr. Holick: That's right. And what I typically recommend to my patients is Tums or Os-Cal or Caltrate or any of the respected brands ... Super Cal or all good sources of calcium.

Adams: As long as you've got vitamin D.

Dr. Holick: Correct. If you have adequate vitamin D or some sun exposure.

Adams: Cod liver oil is of course a great source of vitamin D, as you mention, but some people are concerned about contamination of these oily fish with heavy metals - is that a concern?

Dr. Holick: Yes, PCBs. And so, what you have to do is if you're going to buy it, buy it from a respectable source. Certainly it's a step in the right direction. But you know there are omega fatty acids in there that have benefits to the heart, and have other health benefits. So it may be that many of those outweigh the possible risk if there are contaminants in there. Although, like I said, a lot of the manufacturers are pretty good at making sure that there aren't.


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About the author:Mike Adams (aka the "Health Ranger") is a best selling author (#1 best selling science book on Amazon.com) and a globally recognized scientific researcher in clean foods. He serves as the founding editor of NaturalNews.com and the lab science director of an internationally accredited (ISO 17025) analytical laboratory known as CWC Labs. There, he was awarded a Certificate of Excellence for achieving extremely high accuracy in the analysis of toxic elements in unknown water samples using ICP-MS instrumentation. Adams is also highly proficient in running liquid chromatography, ion chromatography and mass spectrometry time-of-flight analytical instrumentation.

Adams is a person of color whose ancestors include Africans and Native American Indians. He's also of Native American heritage, which he credits as inspiring his "Health Ranger" passion for protecting life and nature against the destruction caused by chemicals, heavy metals and other forms of pollution.

Adams is the founder and publisher of the open source science journal Natural Science Journal, the author of numerous peer-reviewed science papers published by the journal, and the author of the world's first book that published ICP-MS heavy metals analysis results for foods, dietary supplements, pet food, spices and fast food. The book is entitled Food Forensics and is published by BenBella Books.

In his laboratory research, Adams has made numerous food safety breakthroughs such as revealing rice protein products imported from Asia to be contaminated with toxic heavy metals like lead, cadmium and tungsten. Adams was the first food science researcher to document high levels of tungsten in superfoods. He also discovered over 11 ppm lead in imported mangosteen powder, and led an industry-wide voluntary agreement to limit heavy metals in rice protein products.

In addition to his lab work, Adams is also the (non-paid) executive director of the non-profit Consumer Wellness Center (CWC), an organization that redirects 100% of its donations receipts to grant programs that teach children and women how to grow their own food or vastly improve their nutrition. Through the non-profit CWC, Adams also launched Nutrition Rescue, a program that donates essential vitamins to people in need. Click here to see some of the CWC success stories.

With a background in science and software technology, Adams is the original founder of the email newsletter technology company known as Arial Software. Using his technical experience combined with his love for natural health, Adams developed and deployed the content management system currently driving NaturalNews.com. He also engineered the high-level statistical algorithms that power SCIENCE.naturalnews.com, a massive research resource featuring over 10 million scientific studies.

Adams is well known for his incredibly popular consumer activism video blowing the lid on fake blueberries used throughout the food supply. He has also exposed "strange fibers" found in Chicken McNuggets, fake academic credentials of so-called health "gurus," dangerous "detox" products imported as battery acid and sold for oral consumption, fake acai berry scams, the California raw milk raids, the vaccine research fraud revealed by industry whistleblowers and many other topics.

Adams has also helped defend the rights of home gardeners and protect the medical freedom rights of parents. Adams is widely recognized to have made a remarkable global impact on issues like GMOs, vaccines, nutrition therapies, human consciousness.

In addition to his activism, Adams is an accomplished musician who has released over a dozen popular songs covering a variety of activism topics.

Click here to read a more detailed bio on Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, at HealthRanger.com.

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