The definition of a scam is "a confidence game or other fraudulent scheme for the purpose of making a quick profit." There are many vitamin truths and untruths and some of these untruths are considered scams even though they weren't made to make a quick profit. Most recent studies show that the vitamin D hype might be considered a vitamin scam that's so popular that even many of the world's leading nutritionists believe in it and promote it.
Early Research Into the Benefits of Vitamin D
During the 1930s pharmaceutical researchers learned that the sun's rays made secosteroids, often called sunshine hormones in layman's terms. Some of the hormones were identified and even though the researchers couldn't figure out how they interact, they knew each (even the ones unidentified) worked together to provide feel-good feelings that also help to control blood sugar, bone density and inflammation. The researchers discovered besides these benefits, the sun's rays were also toxic to human skin in as little as 20 minutes.
Researchers went to work to find a way to bottle the benefits of sunshine without poisoning the body or damaging the skin. It wasn't long before BASF and Hoffman La Roche became the largest manufacturer of the vitamin D supplement they called "The Sunshine Vitamin." Glamorous marketing followed with spokespeople gushing about its benefits. Before long medical journals retaliated. Reports by scientists in the New England Journal of Medicine wrote that "The Sunshine Vitamin" and its copycat supplements were not really vitamins. They argued vitamins are essential nutrients necessary for survival but that the body can't make on its own. The Sunshine Vitamin did not provide such an essential nutrient, is not crucial for survival and is therefore a fraud.
Some studies indicate that large amounts of vitamin D were used as a way to get rid of large rodent populations. Too much of this vitamin turned out to be toxic to the rodents if ingested over weeks and months and was as effective at getting rid of them as standard rat poison.
Other studies indicate that in humans the synthetic vitamin D originally tricks the body and negatively affects the body's hormonal balance. It causes the body to hold onto too much calcium which causes calcification that can ultimately cause conditions like kidney damage and heart failure.
Vitamin D the Natural Way
So, does that mean you should avoid taking vitamin D supplements? Does all this mean the body doesn't really need vitamin D? According to many scientists, especially those focused on organic chemistry, the answer to the first question is yes. They argue that there is no known safe amount of synthetic vitamin D and that people all over the world are slowly poisoning themselves with vitamin D supplements and synthetic vitamin D additives to their foods.
Like any case, it's best to get all nutrients and minerals from natural sources. Moderate amounts of sunshine are good for the average person. If it's impossible for you to get adequate sunlight, many organic chemists encourage you to seek natural sources for "sunshine hormones" like eggs, non-fortified cold liver oils, salmon, sardines, beef or chicken liver and mackerel.