Monthly Archives: September 2012

The Herbs of Smoothie Essentials: Vitamin D2 (Ergocalciferol)


Add a boost with Calcium Blend, featuring Vitamin D.

Vitamin D2[1] – Ergocalciferol is a form of vitamin D, also called vitamin D2. It is marketed under various names including Deltalin (Eli Lilly and Company), Drisdol (Sanofi-Synthelabo) and Calcidol (Patrin Pharma). It is created from viosterol, which in turn is created when ultraviolet light activates ergosterol (which is found in fungi).

Ergocalciferol is widely used as a Vitamin D supplement, and a 2011 clinical guideline [2] considers it to be as effective as cholecalciferol (Vitamin D3), which is produced naturally by the skin when it is exposed to ultraviolet light. However there is now conflicting evidence regarding how similarly D2 and D3 behave in the body and whether they are equally potent. Some studies suggest D3 is more potent [3][4], but others have found that they are equally effective [5][6].

In the absence of adequate exposure to sunlight or equivalent light, dietary intake of vitamin D is required for maintenance of health. Vitamin D occurs naturally in fish and fish oils, eggs, liver and dairy products. The amounts naturally present in dairy products are generally inadequate to meet the requirements and vitamin D3 is added to evaporated milk, infant formulas, and to most fresh fluid cow milk solid by dairies.

In addition, vitamin D2 or vitamin D3 is commonly added to margarines, to certain breakfast cereals and to a few other foods. Fortification of milk with vitamin D3 since the 1920s has been credited with the marked reduction in incidence of rickets. [7]

Smoothie Essentials Calcium Blend

Recognized by the FDA as Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) [8]

[1] Natural Health Products Ingredients Database – Vitamin D2:

[2] Holick, M. F.; Binkley, N. C.; Bischoff-Ferrari, H. A.; Gordon, C. M.; Hanley, D. A.; Heaney, R. P.; Murad, M. H.; Weaver, C. M. (2011). “Evaluation, Treatment, and Prevention of Vitamin D Deficiency: An Endocrine Society Clinical Practice Guideline”. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism 96 (7): 1911. doi:10.1210/jc.2011-0385.

[3] Trang, H. M.; Cole, D. E.; Rubin, L. A.; Pierratos, A.; Siu, S.; Vieth, R. (1998). “Evidence that vitamin D3 increases serum25-hydroxyvitamin D more efficiently than does vitamin D2”. The American journal of clinical nutrition 68 (4): 854–858. PMID 9771862.

[4]  Houghton, L.; Vieth, R. (2006). “The case against ergocalciferol (vitamin D2) as a vitamin supplement”. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 84 (4): 694–697. PMID 17023693.

[5] Holick, M. F.; Biancuzzo, R. M.; Chen, T. C.; Klein, E. K.; Young, A.; Bibuld, D.; Reitz, R.; Salameh, W. et al. (2007). “Vitamin D2 is as Effective as Vitamin D3 in Maintaining Circulating Concentrations of 25-Hydroxyvitamin D”. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism 93 (3): 677. doi:10.1210/jc.2007-2308.

[6]Biancuzzo, R. M.; Young, A.; Bibuld, D.; Cai, M. H.; Winter, M. R.; Klein, E. K.; Ameri, A.; Reitz, R. et al. (2010).”Fortification of orange juice with vitamin D2 or vitamin D3 is as effective as an oral supplement in maintaining vitamin D status in adults”. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 91 (6): 1621–1626. doi:10.3945/ajcn.2009.27972. PMC 2869510. PMID 20427729

[7] Database of Select Committee on GRAS Substances (SCOGS) Reviews

[8] Generally Recognized As Safe -GRAS No. 95.

Calcium Blend


The Herbs of Smoothie Essentials: Alfalfa


Add a boost with Green Blend, featuring Alfalfa.

Alfalfa has been traditionally used in Herbal Medicine as a nutritive tonic  (Meyer 1993, BHP 1983)[1][2]

Alfalfa ( /ælˈfælfə/; Medicago sativa) [3] is a perennial flowering plant in the pea family Fabaceae cultivated as an important forage crop in the US, Canada, Argentina, France, Australia, the Middle East, South Africa, and many other countries. The English name is adopted from the Spanish,

Originally alfalfez, which in turn is derived from the Arabic al-fisfisa “fresh fodder”. The Spanish name is widely used, particularly in the US but it is also known as lucerne in the

UK, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand, erba medica in Italy, meaning medical herb, luzerne in France, and lucerne grass in South Asian English. It superficially resembles clover, with clusters of small purple flowers followed by fruits spiralled in 2 to 3 turns containing 10-20 seeds.

Alfalfa is high in protein, calcium, plus other minerals, vitamins in the B group, vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin E, and vitamin K.[4]

The sun-dried hay of alfalfa (also known as Lucerne) has been found to be a source of vitamin D, containing 48 ng/g (1920 IU/kg) vitamin D2 and 0.63 ng/g (25 IU/kg) vitamin D3. [5]

[1] Natural Health Products Ingredients Database

[2]Health Canada.  Product Licensing.  Compendium of Monographs:


[4]Nutrition Research Center, Alfalfa Nutritional Value. (21 March 2008).
Retrieved on 17 October 2011.

The Facts About Alfalfa, Melissa Kaplans’
Herb Care.
Retrieved on 17 October 2011.

“Alfalfa:The Father of All Foods”. ALFALFA – A
Discussion of Vitamin B-12 in The
Vegetarian Diet.. Retrieved 2
November 2011.

Diamond, Marilyn
(1990). The American
Vegetarian Cookbook from the Fit For Life Kitchen.
New York: Warner Books. pp. 379. ISBN 0-446-51561-2.

[5]R . L . HORST et al., The
Isolation and identification of Vitamin D2 and Vitamin D3 from Medicago sativa (Alfalfa Plant), ARCHIVES OF BIOCHEMISTRY AND BIOPHYSICS Vol. 231, No. 1, May 15, pp. 67-71, 1984