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Vitamin D2 vs D3 – Which is Better?

Have you ever wondered what differentiates the 5 types of vitamin D (D1, D2, D3, D4 and D5) from each other? As to their functions, there’s nothing much. Their primary task is to keep our bones strong. Maintaining a healthy skeletal system is important for all age groups especially adults suffering from bone conditions such as osteoporosis and osteopenia.

What you may not know is not all vitamin D forms can be used by your body. Only vitamins D2 and D3 are convertible into useful active chemicals. Vitamin D2 is the most common form of vitamin D supplement found in the market. D3, on the other hand, is a naturally occurring form of vitamin D in your body. Vitamin D2 vs D3, which is better?

D2 – Ergocalciferol

Vitamin D2, also known as ergocalciferol in the scientific world, is naturally produced by some plants, fungi and invertebrates – animals without backbone or spine. Unlike plants and animals, however, humans don’t produce this form of vitamin D.

Vitamin D2 vs D3

Vitamin D2 was first discovered in 1920 to be effective in battling rickets. Rickets is the weakening of bones due to vitamin D deficiency. In the past, it has been mainly utilized to fortify foods and used as a supplement to vitamin D-deficient people. Today, it is hardly recommended for supplementation or fortification.

Vitamin D2 is a good absorber of ultraviolet radiation but can also act as sunscreen to fight too much sun.

D3 – Cholecalciferol

Vitamin D3 is the most accessible form of vitamin D for your body. It is naturally produced in your skin when 7-dehydrocholesterol reacts with ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun. Vitamin D3 is first converted to calcifediol, through natural synthesis, and later on to calcitriol.

Calcitriol is the active form of vitamin D which is sent to the bloodstream to perform the functions of vitamin D.

To get your recommended dosage of vitamin D, exposing yourself to the sun for 15 minutes, twice a week, will be enough. Indeed, a cheap and easy way of caring for your bones and body overall.

Vitamin D2 vs D3

It may not be the fight of the century, but the vitamin D2 vs D3 match up can be as interesting as the great debate. So which is better, vitamin D2 or vitamin D3? Some would say it doesn’t really matter because they’re both vitamin D anyway.

But who’s the clear winner between vitamin D2 vs D3? Vitamin D2 used to be the tougher guy until recently when studies have shown that vitamin D3 has far more advantages when it comes to human necessities.

In terms of bio-availability, vitamin D3 is 5 times more bioavailable than vitamin D2. To understand it fully, bio-availability is the capability of vitamin d (or any vitamin whatsoever) to be absorbed quickly by the body.

Additionally, vitamin D2 is less effective due to its poor stability and a short duration of action. Not only that, vitamin D2 also has a shorter shelf life. This leads us to the conclusion that vitamin D3 is a better choice in human supplementation that vitamin D2.

Vitamin D2 vs D3? Vitamin D3 is the clear winner.

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