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What’s the Best Vegan Vitamin D Supplement?
Why You Should Pick D3 over D2

BEST VEGAN VITAMIN D3 SUPPLEMENT

Apart from the infamous B12, there’s another vitamin that our vegan society doesn’t usually get much of unless we spend countless hours sunbathing or happen to live in a tropical paradise.

Vitamin D.

Here, we will dive into the health benefits of this elusive vitamin, and look to find the greatest vegan-friendly vitamin D3 supplement which will boost your health exponentially. The best time to take D3 is starting right now!

Yes, some of these supplements are made from sheep’s wool (as you may be aware) but we’re not going to be looking at any of those ones here – we’ll be sticking to vegan-friendly pills here.

The Best Vegan Vitamin D3 Supplements

PRODUCT

PRODUCT DETAILS

OUR #1 RATED

Ora Organic Vegan Vitamin D Supplement

Ora Organic

(​Editor's Choice)

  • 2,000 IU vitamin D3 per tablet
  • Clean, organic ingredients
  • No fillers
  • check
    Small and easy to swallow
  • check
    Get the BEST PRICE until the end of October

OUR #2 RATED

RealDose

RealDose Essentials

  • Contains 1000 IU of vitamin D3
  • check
    100% organic and made from high-quality ingredients
  • Maintain strong teeth, bones, muscles, and immune system
  •  Free of lanolin and GMO

OUR #3 RATED

Dr Tobias

​Dr. Tobias Vitamin D3

  • ​Packed with 5000 IU of vitamin D
  • Also has powerful antioxidants to supplement a vegan's diet
  • Feel more energetic by taking one capsule a day

OUR #4 RATED

MRM-Vegan-Vitamin-D-3-5,000-IU

MRM

  • Suitable for a plant-based diet
  • High 5000 IU dose – brilliant for bone health
  • Gluten-free and free from GMOs
  • check
    Small and easy to swallow capsules
  • check
    Produced in a GMP certified facility

OUR #5 RATED

Daily D

DailyD

  • Rich in cholecalciferol which is the same form of Vitamin D from ​the sun
  • ​Plant-derived, certified vegan-friendly
  • No allergens and GMO

#1 Editor's Choice: Ora Organic

Ora love putting little jokes on their labels, describing these vitamin D3 pills as “sol food”. It’s funny because “sol” means “sun” in Spanish and vitamin D has links to the sun’s UV rays.​

Anyway, these pills provide you with a 2,000 IU serving of vitamin D3, all of which is sourced from lichen, which is a type of plant-meets-fungus.

As a result, these vitamin D supplements are vegan-friendly. The tablets are small and easy to swallow, which is always a plus in my book.

Ora Organic Vegan Vitamin D Supplement

PROS

  • 2,000 IU vitamin D3 per tablet
  • Clean, organic ingredients
  • No fillers
  • check
    Small and easy to swallow

​CONS

  • A little pricey (but good quality)

I soon found myself feeling more energetic and less achy since using these supplements, so naturally I couldn’t be happier.


#2 RealDose Essentials

RealDose Essentials is an organic vitamin D3 formula which is free of lanolins and GMOS, helping you to maintain an organic vegan diet while getting all the nutrition that you need.

Each tablet contains D3 in a 1000 UI dose, helping you to maintain strong muscles, teeth, bones, calcium absorption and a strong immune system.

If you’re looking for vitamin D without gelatin, RealDose is a high-value product which is derived from lichen, making it suitable for the vegan lifestyle.

Like all RealDose Essentials supplements, Vegan Vitamin D3 is third-party tested for purity so we know we're getting what we paid for. 

Real Dose Vitamin D3

PROS

  • Contains 1000 IU of vitamin D3
  • check
    100% organic and made from high-quality ingredients
  • Maintain strong teeth, bones, muscles, and immune system
  •  Free of lanolin and GMO

​CONS

  • Some users experience bloating

What I also like about this product is that it's manufactured in the United States. Ingredients are sourced from eco-friendly manner from sustainably grown lichen found on rocks and trees in North America, Asia and Scandinavia. 


#3 Dr Tobias Vitamin D3

If you feel like getting the most of  vitamin D in your diet, then Dr. Tobias is the ideal product. 

It features 5000 IU in each capsule, so these plant based vitamins are enough to supplement any vegan’s diet.

Just in case that wasn’t enough, these pills also contain powerful antioxidants which help with immune support, meaning you can fight off illnesses and infections more easily while sticking to a vegan’s diet and lifestyle.

Dr Tobias Vitamin D3

PROS

  • ​Packed with 5000 IU of vitamin D
  • Also has powerful antioxidants to supplement a vegan's diet
  • Feel more energetic by taking one capsule a day

​CONS

  • Can take a while to see results

After trying this out myself, I can honestly say I did feel a difference. Overall, I felt like I had more energy and just feel all round better. 


#4 MRM Vegan Vitamin D3 Supplement 

MRM Vegan Vitamin D3 is an ideal choice for those that want a high-quality vitamin D supplement (that's not made from wool).

Per container, we're looking at 60 servings of 5000 IU of vegan vitamin D3, or cholecalciferol, extracted from lichens.

This is my top pick because this supplement contains large amounts of vitamin D3: the form proven to reliably improve vitamin D status and reduce the risk of all-cause mortality.

Most other vegan vitamin D supplements on the market contain the less effective form of D2.

Moreover, this supplement is free from common allergens such as soy, wheat, egg, gluten, peanut, tree nut, fish, shellfish, soy, and milk products, and it's also GMO-free (if that's your thing).

MRM-Vegan-Vitamin-D-3-5,000-IU

PROS

  • Suitable for a plant-based diet
  • High 5000 IU dose – brilliant for bone health
  • Gluten-free and free from GMOs
  • check
    Small and easy to swallow capsules
  • check
    Produced in a GMP certified facility

​CONS

  • Contains additives such as maltodextrin and sucrose which don’t really need to be included

To sum it all up, this vitamin D supplement does what it promises to do - reviewers mention that taking this supplement successfully raised their vitamin D status from deficient to optimal.


#5 DailyD Vegan Vitamin D3 Supplement

DailyD Vegan Vitamin D3 Supplement delivers plant-based vitamin D extracted from lichen in a liquid drop form.

We're looking at vitamin D in its most bioavailable form: Vitamin D3.

Another positive feature is the large number of servings per container:

In total, there's 365 servings or drops in this flask, each providing 2.500 IU. Of course, if you want to up the dosage a container will not last as long, but it's still great value.

There's not much else to add here, it's a basic vegan vitamin D supplement that delivers what is promised.

It's been third-party tested for purity, manufactured in a GMP-certified facility, and is free of known allergens and GMOs.

DailyD Vegan Vitamin D3 Supplement

PROS

  • Rich in cholecalciferol which is the same form of Vitamin D from ​the sun
  • ​Plant-derived, certified vegan-friendly
  • No allergens and GMO

​CONS

  • Delivery system can be improved upon

Now, one major drawback is the actual delivery system. It's almost impossible to get only one drop beneath your tongue with the dropper bottle’s design.


What Exactly is Vitamin D?

Vitamin D refers to a group of fat-soluble steroid hormones. These steroids are involved in a wide variety of critical body functions such as (1):

Regulating calcium levels in the body and supporting healthy bones (vitamin D deficiency is one of the leading causes for rickets in children), normal neuromuscular and immune function, reduction of inflammation and a whole bunch of other things.

There are two variations of this vitamin, D2 and D3, which differ from each other in terms of their bioactivity:

D2 Form

Vitamin D2, or ergocalciferol, is found in certain plants and mushrooms. It is produced as a response to UV radiation similarly to how our skin produces vitamin D when exposed to sunlight.

So, wouldn't eating these plants and mushrooms be the obvious answer to vitamin D needs on a plant-based diet? That would be great, but unfortunately, there's a catch here.

Sadly, D2 is nowhere near as potent as D3 in improving vitamin D status:

mushrooms-opienki-forest-litter-45205

D3 Form

Vitamin D3, or cholecalciferol, is the most biologically active form of vitamin D.

D3 has been shown to be approximately 87% more potent in raising and maintaining Vitamin D blood levels, and produces 200-300% greater storage of vitamin D, compared to the D2 form (2).

Due to this difference in bioactivity, vitamin D3 also seems to decrease the risk of all-cause mortality while D2 has no such effect (3).

sun

Basically, we want to focus our attention on vitamin D3 intake, and not D2. This form of vitamin D is the one that's produced in our skin when exposed to UV rays.

Now, there's also a small selection of natural dietary D3 sources in the form of animal products such as oily fish, liver, meats, and eggs. Though, the amount of D3 provided by these foods is very small compared to our own endogenous production:

For instance, spending a day at the beach can produce an amount equivalent to ingesting 10.000 to 25.000 IU of vitamin D. Compare that to the measly 87 IU present in 100 gram of eggs (4).

If you are using cancer cell lines or cancer cells, vitamin D has anti-cancer effects, and likewise in cells that have been used for models for infection and immune disorders, vitamin D has quite clear antibacterial and anti-inflammatory effects.

Martin Hewison

Molecular endocrinology professor at the University of Birmingham

Do vegans get enough vitamin D?

Vitamin D insufficiency affects almost 50% of the population worldwide (5).

Vegans do not usually get enough vitamin D in their diet. However, most vegetarians and omnivores will not get enough vitamin D in their diet either.

This is because our bodies produce vitamin D most effectively when exposed to sunlight. For people on a plant-based diet who want to increase their vitamin D intake, there are vegan vitamin D supplements available on the market which can help you with your daily nutrition.

sunshine on compass

How much vitamin d should a vegan take?

Vegans should take a minimum of 2000 IU per day of vitamin D. However, recent reports have suggested that this estimate may be wrong, with some researchers suggesting that we should consume between 8,000 and 10,000 IU daily in order to receive the full benefits of the vitamin (6).

Furthermore, clinical trial evidence shows that 10,000 IU per day of vitamin D3 is likely to pose no risk of adverse effects in almost all individuals, including vegans. Certain factors, including height and bodyweight, will also play a part in your recommended vitamin D intake (7).

Why You Probably Need More Than The Current RDA

According to new research, the current RDA at 600 IU per day to maintain 25(OH)D levels of 50 nmol/L may be far too low for optimal health.

Here's why:

While the RDA may be enough to support healthy bones and prevent rickets, as we know today, vitamin D is of critical importance for many other functions in the body, especially for the immune system (8).

This means that a higher intake of vitamin D can potentially offer many more health benefits than just for supporting bone health. And this is exactly what new evidence is suggesting: serum levels for 25(OH)D at a minimum of 75 nmol/L has been associated with (9) (10):

  • Increased bone mineral density
  • Improved dental health
  • Reduced risk of fall fractures
  • Less colorectal cancer
  • Improved depression and wellbeing

1 in 5 people have low vitamin D levels (defined as serum levels below 25 nmol/L). Low vitamin D levels are associated with a higher risk of poor musculoskeletal health such as rickets, osteomalacia, falls and poor muscle strength.

British Nutrition Foundation


What vegan foods contain vitamin D?

Vegan foods that contain vitamin D include the following:

  • Mushrooms - maitake, button, morel, shiitake, and portobello mushrooms
  • Fortified milks – such as many soy milks and almond milks
  • Tofu – many tofu products contain 20% of your vitamin D RDA in 1 serving

Incorporating these foods into a vegan meal plan is wise, although we would still recommend that you take vegan vitamin D supplements as well – although rich in many daily nutrients, these foods are not very high in vitamin D.

What To Avoid When Buying Vitamin D Supplements

Beware, fellow vegan brothers and sisters.

It isn't as easy as walking into your supplement store and buying the first best D3 supplement; there are a couple of factors that you have to consider when looking for the #1 best D3 supplement.

First of all, as we've established, you don't want to purchase a vitamin D2 supplement as they aren't nearly as effective as the D3 form. However, the majority of vitamin D3 supplements aren't vegan because they're produced from lanolin, a waxy substance derived from sheep's wool, and that’s probably not good news for vegans..

Luckily, there are indeed a couple of vegan D3 supplements on the market. Instead of using lanolin, the D3 is derived from a plant called lichen.

And as always when buying vegan supplements, you have to make sure that there are no animal products such as gelatin in the formula (which would be very strange to find in a D3 supplement based on lichen, but you can never be too sure).

Our #1 Recommended Vegan Vitamin D3 Supplement

Out of all these great vitamin D3 products our top recommendation would be Ora Organic.

It contains 2000 UI of D3 - which means this product gives you the recommended intake that you need unless you’re lying on the beach all day or eating your bodyweight in tofu and mushrooms!

As if that wasn’t enough, these pills are ideal for those with sensitive stomachs too, and they’re equally suitable for both men and women. So, if you’re looking to get the most of vitamin D3 on a vegan diet, Ora Organic would be the smart choice.

Ora Organic Vegan Vitamin D3

​Our Top Vitamin D3 Pick

​Ora Organic Vegan Vitamin D3 is an excellent choice for those that want a high-quality vitamin D supplement (that's not made from wool).

And per container, we're looking at ​2,000 IU of vegan vitamin D3, or cholecalciferol, extracted from lichens.

The tablets are small and easy to swallow which makes it the best out there.

Ora Organic Vegan Vitamin D Supplement

Get the BEST PRICE until the end of October

What's next? If you're interested in other beneficial vegan supplements, check out this page.

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Jason Hughes

Hey, I'm Jason and welcome to my website. I created VeganLiftz because of my passion (more like obsession) with the vegan diet, strength training, and bodybuilding. Feel free to peruse the various articles on this website; I hope you find something useful!
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1 thought on “What’s the Best Vegan Vitamin D Supplement?
Why You Should Pick D3 over D2

  1. Thank you SO much for this information!
    I have been vegan/vegetarian for the past 8 years now and I just now decided to start taking supplements since I have been feeling a bit out of it lately (not eating/drinking enough at work since we are super short staffed lately)… and I know I’m supposed to be taking B12, D, and C vitamins… good think I looked into them before just buying! SHEEP’S WOOL! Come onnn!
    Easy to follow article, great information, thank you!

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