The ZRT Laboratory Blog

The ZRT Blog is an extensive resource for patients and health care providers searching for health and hormone testing information. Here, you can read about ZRT’s cutting edge research, advances in testing, wellness advice, and health industry highlights.

Vitamin D: What Level is Normal vs Optimal? 

Posted by Jillian Harrington, PhD, HCLD on Wednesday, 10 January

Woman shading her face from the sun

If you have ever had your level of Vitamin D tested, depending on which lab you used, your report showing whether your level is low, normal, or high might have left you scratching your head. In fact, there are multiple agencies all with slightly different opinions on what levels are deficient, insufficient, sufficient, high, or toxic.

When testing with ZRT, you will receive a result that is reflective of your total 25-Hydroxy Vitamin D status (vitamin D2 plus Vitamin D3) in blood. This is the storage form of vitamin D, which is converted by the kidneys to the biologically active form, 1,25-dihydroxycholecalciferol.

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Shorter Days: A SAD Pattern

Posted by Dr. Allison Smith on Friday, 03 November

Sad man looking outside at the snow

It feels like winter is officially looming now that we’ve all turned our clocks back and the days are getting shorter. In the Pacific Northwest, this also brings darkness and rain for many months and for some of us, it brings seasonal affective disorder (SAD).

Whether or not symptoms of SAD eclipse your normal disposition, there’s a good chance the sun's vacation this time of year will affect four key areas of your health.

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How to Supplement with Vitamin D & Melatonin after Melanoma

Posted by Lissa Gienty on Thursday, 04 May

Before and after melanoma removal

Quick Takeaway: Studies suggest high blood levels of 25-OH vitamin D may prevent melanoma [1] and appropriate D levels may affect the prognosis in both primary [2] and metastatic melanomas. [3] Keep your levels in blood between 50-80 ng/dL.

Additionally, melatonin and its metabolites protect the skin from sun and help guard the DNA there when faced with the mixture of cancer-inducing ultraviolet rays and oxidation. 

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Got SAD? Got ODD? Here's News You Can Use

Posted by Candace Burch on Wednesday, 10 February

Snowy trees in the winter with sun risingOn Nov. 24, the sun set in the tiny Greenlandic town of Ittoqqortoormiit. For the next three months, the Inuit inhabitants of this isolated, icebound landscape will take their children to school in the dark, work in the dark, and pick them up in the dark.

And though townspeople admit that, "it can get depressing for people who weren't born here, especially in December," the local mindset is that living in darkness is just a normal part of life. Isn't there something they do to stay happy in the absence of the sun? Not really. "We just deal with it! Polar People don't mind!" (Hersher, 2016).

But if you are not one of the "Polar People" and looking for a solution to flagging mood and energy—especially if it occurs during the fall and winter monthsyou probably do mind, very much. In that case, the possibility that you are deficient in Vitamin D should be a top consideration. (Consider that the Inuit diet is very unusual compared to ours, given that they eat plenty of fatty sea food that is super rich in vitamin D.)

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