Most of us know that Vitamin D is essential for cellular growth and for overall health. However, the average person cannot give you any specifics on why Vitamin D is so vital.
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that is involved with essential body processes, Adequate vitamin D intake is important for the regulation of calcium and phosphorus absorption, maintenance of healthy bones and teeth and functions such as boosting the immune system, reducing inflammation, promoting cell growth and supporting neuromuscular functions. It also plays a key role in the prevention and treatment of different health issues such as Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes, hypertension, glucose intolerance, multiple sclerosis and other autoimmune diseases.
Vitamin D is produced in the body with the help of ultraviolet rays from sunlight and when you do not get enough sunlight or eat foods rich in vitamin D, you are at a higher risk of suffering from vitamin D deficiency. Recent studies have suggested that up to 50% of adults and children worldwide are vitamin D deficient.
Signs of Vitamin D Deficiency
1- Impaired Immune System
Vitamin D supports proper function of the T cells that build immunity to help your body fight foreign organisms. The most important sign of low vitamin D is weak or impaired immunity, which can cause you to get sick easily.
2- Aching Bones
Vitamin D is vital for bone, cartilage and muscle function. Lack of adequate vitamin D in the body can cause general muscle pain, muscle cramps and chronic pain. Your body needs vitamin D to absorb calcium; without it, calcium does not reach your skeletal system, which can lead to joint pains and other severe ailments such as rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
3- Constant Fatigue
If you are constantly tired and fatigued, you may need to get your vitamin D levels checked. Your body needs vitamin D for energy. Low levels of this vitamin leads to fat accumulation, which lowers your metabolism and makes you less energetic.
4- Mood Swings
Did you know that vitamin D aids in the production of serotonin? Increased serotonin can also help lessen the impact of stress and prevent or treat mild depression.
5- Excessive Sweating
Low vitamin D causes excessive sweating, especially on the head. Vitamin D regulates the concentration of minerals and helps regulate your body’s fluid balance and body temperature.
How can you get vitamin D naturally in your system?
Bask In Sunshine
This is the most natural way to get vitamin D. The human body can make its own vitamin D when exposed to sunlight, unlike other vitamins. Most doctors recommend at least 10 to 15 minutes of sunlight exposure at least 2 or 3 times a week. However, in order to avoid damage to the skin from sunlight, it is also recommended that this exposure should take place before 10 am in the morning when sunlight is at its mildest. Do remember that Vitamin D has a half-life of only two weeks, which means stores can run low, especially in winter.
Vitamin D Supplements
The daily recommendation for vitamin D is approximately 10 micrograms (400 IU) for infants, 15 micrograms (600 IU) for children and adults, and increases to 20 micrograms (800 IU) for those above the age of 70. You can try a dosage of Nutriplus BoneHealth each day, which gives you 5 mcg of Vitamin D.
From Your Food
Foods that provide vitamin D include salmon, orange juice, egg yolk, cod-liver oil, goat’s milk and shiitake mushrooms. Healthy fat should also be incorporated in the diet to improve vitamin D absorption. Being a fat-soluble vitamin, healthy fat such as that available in nuts, seeds (such as sunflower, flaxseed) and seed oils, pure ghee, milk and olives, enhances the absorption of vitamin D.