September 17, 2014

Letter from the Director


It's time for IMPLEMENTATION of the vitamin D message into the public health arena. GrassrootsHealth will host a seminar on December 9th and 10th in San Diego at UCSD to do exactly this: "Vitamin D for Public Health - Integrating Sunshine, Supplements and Measurement for Optimal Health." The seminar will feature world-renowned scientists in vitamin D and photobiology. But it won't just be them talking to you. Each day has an interactive session with the speakers and the audience to outline how to make change happen in your community, your organization. How can we bring science into practice? We invite public health officials, community center managers, insurance company executives, doctors, nurses - anyone who sees the potential benefits of optimal health and disease prevention - to come and learn how vitamin D and the sun can change the landscape of their community.   

And keep reading... This is the third article in our three-part series on crowd-funding. First we discussed the history of vitamin D and acknowledged the deficiency epidemic; then we explained how you are part of a study cohort of replete vitamin D participants, helping to publish more scientific data about vitamin D sufficiency. But this next part is my favorite; it describes how to act! GrassrootsHealth has been working behind the scenes on methodology, education, and infrastructure to support community projects so that you can take this to your community - get crowd-funded - and create your own vitamin D replete cohort. Not only will this improve lives and lower healthcare costs, but it will provide more scientific evidence on vitamin D sufficiency.


Whether you read this article and share it on Facebook, join us at the seminar, or are ready to start something in your community - thank you!



Carole Baggerly


Director, GrassrootsHealth

A Public Health Promotion & Research Organization

Moving Research into Practice NOW!



Taking Vitamin D to Your Community


By now you are convinced that making the world vitamin D sufficient will change the healthcare landscape, and more importantly change lives! You signed up for D*action, completed your questionnaire and submitted your vitamin D test; you are part of a study - and you understand what vitamin D sufficiency means to your health. Inevitably, this has led to discussions with family, friends, and co-workers. Most likely, you have convinced at least a few from your sphere of influence on the importance of vitamin D.  


GrassrootsHealth is now ready to make a bigger impact...starting with children.


Our Children Need a Good Start


During the last decade, Dr. Carol Wagner, M.D., has studied more than 1000 pregnant women in the Charleston, South Carolina area. She found that 75% of African American women were vitamin D deficient (< 20 ng/ml), as were 33% of Hispanic women, and 22% of Caucasian women. She also conducted studies which varied the amounts of vitamin D supplementation (400 IU, 2000 IU, and 4000 IU) given to pregnant women and showed that 4000 IU (10 times the amount in prenatal vitamins) was not only safe, but also necessary to achieve a healthy level of vitamin D hormone during pregnancy.


What does that mean? Based on her research, Dr. Wagner states that approximately 50% of the comorbidities of pregnancy, including preeclampsia, preterm labor, infections, and gestational diabetes, appear to be directly related to vitamin D deficiency. "When you lump all of these (comorbidities) together you find that, in the women who were on 4000 IU compared to 400 IU, their risk of these comorbidities in pregnancy was half," states Dr. Wagner, a lead researcher, pediatrician, and neonatal-perinatal medical expert.   


Cost to the Community


If you are not ready to act yet, maybe you need some dollars and sense. According to the Health and Human Services Agency, there are 4 million births each year in Canada and the U.S.. Pre-term births account for about 10% of Caucasians and sometimes as much as 18% of African Americans. 40-50% of pre-term births could be prevented with vitamin D. That means 223,000 babies each year (600 babies/day) would no longer be born early. According to the March of Dimes, there are $50,000 in healthcare costs associated with each pre-term birth - that is a savings of over $11 billion dollars a year in U.S. and Canada.


Are you ready now?


Protect Our Children NOW!


Protect Our Children NOW! is a novel approach to taking the vitamin D story out to the community. The project is focused on pregnant women, letting them know that they are at risk for vitamin D deficiency, and to say, "You have a choice. You can find out what your vitamin D status is and make a difference in your life, and the lives of your children. You are not dependent on hearing it from your physician, who may or may not tell you."

Protect Our Children NOW! is our campaign to start local, community projects in your area. The campaign will seek to enroll a group of pregnant women, measure vitamin D levels throughout pregnancy, and see the difference vitamin D sufficiency can make.

GrassrootsHealth is prepared to provide the science, guides, education, analysis, and promotion - while the community provides the participants and the results. Funding for the start of a program will either come from participants (crowd-funded) or from a grant. Insurance executives, public health officials, community centers are all starting to sit up and take note.  


Who will be the first to act?


Where is the *action?


GrassrootsHealth has developed a platform that will kickstart Protect Our Children NOW! in your community based on scientists, results, guides, participation, education, analysis, and promotion.



We have a panel of 42 scientists that work with  GrassrootsHealth. They research vitamin D with respect to many different fields of medicine. These scientists not only continue their own research and publications, but also have access to GrassrootsHealth data to publish more findings about vitamin D health.



The impact of vitamin D on pregnancy is demonstrable, has short term results, and high impact. While some aspects of optimal health from vitamin D can be hard to measure, such as reduction in pain and inflammation; whether or not a baby was born pre-term is easily measurable. Protect Our Children NOW! will facilitate short-term community projects that produce measurable results.



We have software and guides that participants can use to take charge of their health. Participants use our guides to answer questions and track the lifecycle of the study (i.e. during pregnancy). These guides are also printable so that the participants can take them to their health practitioner(s).  



Each community provides the funding for the research and testing done in that community. In turn community members have access to an online system that allows them to track their health status and feeds data into the study.



GrassrootsHealth continues to be the leader in vitamin D education - through seminars, webinars, and publications. When a community project is started, there will be education specific for that group of participants - both live and on the Internet.  



Our D*action data has already had significant results which have been published in major medical publications. As we launch more Protect Our Children NOW! community projects, we can confirm that vitamin D sufficiency affects pregnancy. With the results from just a few projects, we fully expect the data gathered will hit the medical journals and OB's will take notice.  


GrassrootsHealth will continue to promote vitamin D sufficiency in both the "grassroots" and medical communities - making headway and moving science into practice faster than ever before.  


Editor's Note


This is an exciting time in the history of vitamin D. We are still in an early adopter phase, meaning it is not standard of care to suggest regular vitamin D testing or a vitamin D serum level of 40-60 ng/ml - but vitamin D is getting more attention. There are more than a few natural medicine pundits that tout the value of vitamin D and it is a regular in the natural health world.  


How do we get the rest of the world to listen? GrassrootsHealth has thought of a great way - not to just tell people, but to convince the policy makers. To record data, to publish papers, to conduct studies - all that show why a vitamin D serum level of 40-60 ng/ml will prevent disease. And now you can help. Do you know an influencial OB in your area? A lactation group that might listen? A mayor or city official that is concerned about healthcare? A large community center? Any of these groups could start a Protect our Children NOW! Campaign and it would not only affect your small community - but also help other communities by adding strength to the gathered data.


How many can we start in 2014?


Susan Siljander 

Marketing Director, GrassrootsHealth

A Public Health Promotion & Research Organization 

Moving Research into Practice NOW!



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Your participation in this project funds all the GrassrootsHealth research and promotion.

Vitamin D for Public Health
Integrating Sunshine, Supplements and Measurement for Optimal Health


December 9, 10


La Jolla, CA


It's Up to US!

Carole Baggerly


Director, GrassrootsHealth
November 2013
Watch Now

What is Protect our Children NOW!

Carole Baggerly

Director, GrassrootsHealth

Dr. Carol Wagner  

Professor of Pediatrics and Neonatology, Medical University of South Carolina

Watch Now

Professor of Pediatrics and Neonatology, Medical University of South Carolina

View Press Release

The Cost of Vitamin D Deficiency: In Dollars & Disease

Dr. Susan Whiting, B.Sc., M.Sc., Ph.D.

Professor of Nutrition and Dietetics

University of Saskatchewan

February 2013

Watch Now 


Share this newsletter on Facebook! Click on the top left social share buttons to share this entire newsletter. 


You can prevent disease if just one more person finds out about the preventative properties of vitamin D and starts moving their blood serum levels to 40-60 ng/ml. 

Dr. Bruce Hollis  

The Role of the Parent Compound Vitamin D with Respect to Metabolism and Function: Why Clinical Dose Intervals Can Affect Clinical Outcomes

Bruce W. Hollis

J Clin Endocrinol Metab, 2013

Full Publication 

Dr. Cedric Garland

Meta-analysis of Vitamin D Sufficiency for Improving Survival of Patients with Breast Cancer

Cedric F. Garland

Anticancer Research, 2014

Full Publication  



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