People who take Vitamin D to stave off SAD-type gloom: please give me your anecdotes. In particular, how long does it take to start working?
Extended explanation, to satisfy the curiosity of people who like extended explanations:
This year, after a gloriously bright early spring, we had four overcast, rainy months instead of a summer. I've hardly set foot outside in months: throughout July and August especially, I'd open the door and the heavens would open, or the sky would fill with #!@#$! flying ants. Now it's definitely autumn, with cold winds and rain and yet more grey skies. Aargh. *sob*
My mood is strongly affected by daily variations in the weather: bright sunshine cheers me up, and grey gloom casts me down, even if I go out in it. So I've had a fairly awful summer - and as I need to find a new job and arrange an international move, I've got plenty of real problems to be stressed out about at the moment. I can't really afford to have the weather dampening my spirits further. (Sorry.)
While searching AskMe for advice on lightboxes, I was interested to find testimonials in various threads to the efficacy of high-dose Vitamin D supplements: for instance, in this thread
and this one
. Considering how little exposure I've had to sunlight in the last few months (not only have I been indoors most of the time, but there've been very few days warm enough for short sleeves), I probably am vitamin-D-deficient; and vitamin supplements are a much cheaper thing to try than a €150+ energy lamp.
In this country, the RDA of Vitamin D turns out to be 5 micrograms, or 200 IU. The only pure Vitamin D supplements I can find in the shops are aimed at toddlers, and consist of little sugar tablets containing 5 micrograms of D3. It's not really a blood-test-on-demand kind of health system here, so I can't easily get my baseline levels checked or get prescribed high-dose tablets; it's the kiddy vitamins or nothing.
OK. So, I tried taking three of those a day (600 IU) for a week or so. That didn't seem to be helping, so I upped the dose to five a day, which I've been doing for a couple of days now. No noticeable improvement yet. Should there be, or is it too soon?
In any case, I'm going to try going up to 2000 IU before I give up on this, even though I'll end up rattling. Should I do that tomorrow, or should I give the 1000 IU dose a bit more of a chance? And how long should I stick with the higher dose before giving up and fleeing south for a holiday in the sun?
(Why yes, I *am* a pessimist. But I could be a happier, more human-feeling pessimist than I am right now, if the sun would only shine...)