vitamin d shots

Should You Take Vitamin D Supplements Or Injectables?

Vitamin D is an essential hormone that our bodies need for immune system function and bone health. However, with more people spending time indoors or during the colder months, many people don’t get enough vitamin D naturally. And while you can still supplement vitamin D through certain foods, it may be difficult for some to get the required daily dose through diet alone. But there are Vitamin D shots as well as other supplements, to help you meet your body’s needs today. 

Luckily, the advancement of the vitamin and health and wellness industry has made it easier than ever to ensure you get the vitamins you need, including vitamin D, through various forms. So for those unable to get enough vitamin D naturally, there are now multiple options to make sure you’re getting enough and receiving the health benefits that vitamin D provides. 

The two most common and popular ways to receive vitamin D outside of diet and sunlight are through oral supplements or vitamin injections. Both options are great ways to get your extra boost of vitamin D, but how do you know which method is ideal for you? The best way to determine if you should take a vitamin D supplement or injection is by consulting a professional medical practitioner. However, in this article, we’ll go into the details and differences between vitamin D supplements and injections to give you a better idea of who they’re best for and which might work for you. 

What is Vitamin D and Its Benefits?

Vitamin D is a powerhouse hormone that your body relies on for several functions, from supporting a strong immune system to bone health. It’s classified as a fat-soluble vitamin and not naturally found in many foods people tend to eat, which makes it harder to intake naturally. Most of the time, vitamin D is enhanced or added to certain food items.

Vitamin D is primarily responsible for helping the body absorb specific minerals, including iron, calcium, and zinc. It also aids in balancing sodium and phosphorus in the body. An imbalance of these two can potentially cause serious and even fatal illnesses. A vitamin D deficiency can also occur from low dietary intake of the vitamin or sparse sun exposure. Having a deficiency is associated with:

  • Rickets
  • Osteoporosis
  • Cardiovascular disease 
  • Cognitive impairments
  • Asthma
  • Cancer
  • Pain or achiness
  • Depression or feelings of sadness
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle weakness
  • Hair loss
  • Getting sick more easily

The recommended daily dose of vitamin D for adults is 600 to 800 international units (IU). Vitamin D supplements come in two forms, vitamin D2 and vitamin D3. Vitamin D3 is typically the form that’s preferred as a supplement because it tends to do a better job of raising the levels of vitamin D in the bloodstream. 

Benefits of Vitamin D

Like all vitamins and minerals, making sure you get the recommended amount of vitamin D daily comes with several benefits, regardless of if you receive it via an oral supplement or a vitamin injection. The benefits of taking vitamin D include:

  • Strong bones–vitamin D is essential for helping prevent brittle, weak bones and lowers the risk of osteoporosis. It helps the body absorb bone-building calcium.
  • Healthy heart–it can greatly help in maintaining healthy blood vessels and lowering cholesterol.
  • Stronger immune system–vitamin D may be helpful with immune support and defense against germs that can cause colds, the flu, and other sicknesses. It can also aid in relieving symptoms of inflammation caused by autoimmune diseases. 
  • Elevated mood–mood disorders, like depression, can be a result or worsen due to a deficiency. 
  • Cognitive health–it has been linked to helping maintain cognitive health and function throughout life.
  • Diabetes and weight loss support–low levels of vitamin D have been linked to obesity and diabetes. More vitamin D may help manage diabetes symptoms and improve weight loss.

How to Naturally Get More Vitamin D

While supplements and vitamin injections are a great option to get an extra boost of vitamins and minerals and maintain a healthy, balanced level, it’s always recommended to first try and receive your daily dose of vitamins naturally. The best ways to get vitamin D daily are by getting moderate sunlight exposure daily and eating select foods.

Foods high in vitamin D include:

  • Fatty fish, such as salmon, trout, tuna, and mackerel
  • Canned fish like herring and sardines
  • Egg yolks
  • Beef liver
  • Fish liver
  • Fortified foods like milk, oatmeal, breakfast cereal, and orange juice

However, if you can’t get enough naturally, you have dietary restrictions, or your body has a hard time absorbing nutrients, then a supplement option may be the best choice.

Vitamin D Supplements vs. Injectables

Vitamin D can be taken in pill form, or it can be injected either through a shot or an IV infusion. Oral supplements and injections are both effective ways to deliver vitamin D into the body’s system. Which one is better depends on your physiology, needs, and preferences. 

Vitamin D oral supplements might be best for people who don’t have any medical conditions related to a vitamin D deficiency and just want to ensure they’re getting their daily recommended amount. Oral supplements may also be the best option for people who don’t have any issues absorbing nutrients and would benefit from taking a daily supplement.

Injections might be better suited for people who need to take vitamin D shots because of a medical issue or vitamin deficiency or have trouble naturally absorbing nutrients through food or oral supplements. Some individuals also have genetic variations that limit their ability to absorb vitamin D by oral means. 

Oral Supplements

Since vitamin D is found in very few foods and most people don’t get the daily sun exposure needed, many people can take advantage of a daily vitamin D supplement and receive its various health benefits. There are also those who may be at a higher risk of a vitamin D deficiency that can benefit from a supplement, including older adults, overweight individuals, and those that live in the northern hemisphere. Taking a vitamin D supplement daily is an easy and effective way to ensure you’re able to meet the requirements and reduce the risk of a deficiency. A daily oral supplement may be ideal for:

  • Older adults
  • Vegan or vegetarians
  • People who get limited sun exposure
  • People with darker skin 
  • People that are overweight

However, with all the different types of vitamin D supplements available on the market, it can be overwhelming to choose the best one. Ultimately if you’re going to take an oral supplement, it’s best to pick a vitamin D3 supplement since this is the most absorbable form. Vitamin D3 from animal products is the closest to what sunlight naturally produces in humans when the skin converts UV light to vitamin D. 

When choosing a vitamin D oral supplement, make sure to look at the ingredient list and select a product that has minimal added ingredients and fillers to ensure you get the best value. You can also find vitamin D supplements that are combined with calcium to help with absorption. It’s important to keep in mind that vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin, so if the supplement you choose doesn’t contain an oil, then you should take your vitamin with a meal that contains a good source of fat to optimize absorption. 

When it comes to optimizing your vitamin D supplement and how much you should take, that ultimately depends on your age. The current guidelines for dosage are:

  • 400 IU for infants 0-12 months
  • 600 IU for children and adults 1-70 years old
  • 800 IU for people older than 70

Many vitamin D supplements on the market can exceed the recommended dosage, some even containing up to 5,000 IU per pill. So it’s important to pay attention to how many IUs are in one pill or serving to ensure you’re not taking too much vitamin D in a single day. Taking a vitamin D dosage under 10,000 IU typically won’t result in any toxicity symptoms, but taking high doses may negatively impact health over time. Overexposure to vitamin D over time can result in experiencing drowsiness, stomach pain, vomiting, and confusion. 

As far as the time of day that’s best to take a vitamin D supplement, there isn’t any research that says morning or night is better. It can be taken at any time and doesn’t need to be taken with a meal unless your supplement doesn’t contain oil, and then you’ll need to eat it with a healthy fat.


Vitamin D shots deliver a dose of vitamin D3 straight to the bloodstream either through a shot or IV. This means that people who receive injections will experience the effects of vitamin D much quicker than through supplements or diet. This option can be much better for those who have a deficiency, have trouble absorbing nutrients from vitamins taken orally or through diet, or have a medical condition or symptoms that can be helped with the intake of regular vitamin D. 

Those who are darker skinned, undergoing kidney dialysis, have a higher body mass, or are at risk of a vitamin D deficiency may have a harder time receiving it naturally and should consider getting tested or evaluated to see if Vitamin D shots would be the most beneficial option. Because receiving vitamin D shots cuts out any absorption issues, it’s a highly recommended form of vitamin therapy for people who are at risk for a deficiency or have conditions that could benefit from more vitamin D intake. 

Injections can provide a wide variety of benefits, including:

  • Strengthen bones
  • Improve mood and energy levels
  • Aid with digestive issues
  • Reduce anxiety
  • Reduce allergy sensitivity
  • Help with skin conditions
  • Improve athletic performance
  • Aid in weight loss efforts
  • Reduce headaches and migraines

The Bottom Line

Vitamin D is an essential nutrient the body needs to remain strong and healthy for a variety of bodily functions. And since it doesn’t commonly occur in many foods, you may have a harder time getting enough daily. Using oral supplements or injections to get your needed dose of vitamin D is beneficial.  But depending on your current needs, one may be better for you than the other. 
It’s best to consult with a medical professional to determine whether vitamin d shots or supplements are right for you. CORR offers top-quality IV vitamin therapy that can help you receive the full benefits of vitamin D. You can meet with one of our trained professionals to go over your vitamin needs and which IV vitamin therapy treatment plan is the best for you. To get started, contact our team to set up a consultation.