Do You Have A Vitamin D Deficiency?
By Kavata Kithome
We all know that we need vitamin-D to help with cellular growth and that it is an essential vitamin for overall health. Yet, the average person can not tell you any specifics on why vitamin-D is so vital.
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that is involved with essential body processes 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.
Here are some signs that you may have a vitamin D deficiency:
1. Impaired Immunity: Vitamin D supports proper function of the T cells that build immunity to help your body fight foreign, invading organisms. The most important sign of low vitamin D is weak or impaired immunity, which can cause you to more easily pick up illness.
2. Bone Pain: 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 bone pains or joint pain and even more severe ailments such as multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia.
3. Tiredness And 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. Psoriasis: A 2013 study published in the Dermato-Endocrinology Journal have linked autoimmunity with a vitamin D deficiency.
6. Digestive Problems: If you suffer from a gastrointestinal condition, your body may not be able to absorb vitamin D. A 2011 study published in Therapeutic Advance in Gastroenterology showed a link between low vitamin D and gastrointestinal diseases as well as inflammatory bowel disease and colorectal cancer.
7. Excessive Sweating: This was a surprising one, yet 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.
8. High Blood Pressure: Vitamin D suppresses the enzymatic process that can constrict the arteries and lead to high blood pressure. Also, it can improve blood circulation throughout the entire body, which is an essential part of your heart function. If you have high blood pressure (hypertension), get your vitamin D levels checked.
9. Overweight/Obese: Research found that a 10% rise in body mass index (BMI) causes a 4% drop in concentrations of vitamin D in the body.
With all this information, you are probably asking yourself, “How do I get vitamin D naturally in my system?”
Here are 3 simple ways to get the amounts of vitamin D that you need:
1. Bask In The Glorious Sun: This is the most natural way to get vitamin D. You only need to expose your skin for around half the time it takes for your skin to turn pink and begin to burn. How much vitamin D is produced from sunlight depends on the time of day, where you live in the world and the color of your skin. The more skin you expose, the more vitamin D that is produced.
2. Vitamin D Supplements: to ensure that you are taking the appropriate amounts of supplements, please consult with your general physician. Below is a table of recommended dosage as a starting guide.
|Recommended daily intakes from various organizations:
||Vitamin D Council
||Food and Nutrition Board
||1,000 IU/day per 25lbs of body weight
||600 IU/day, 800 IU/day for seniors
Please keep in mind that The Food and Nutrition Board recommended daily intakes are the official recommendations by the United States government.
3. Vitamin D From Your Diet: If all else fails, you can get vitamin D from your diet. Keep in mind that these foods have only small amounts of vitamin D, but in my honest opinion, it’s better to get a small amount of vitamin D than none at all and this is how:
- Fatty Fish
- Beef Liver
- Egg Yolks
- Orange Juice (fresh squeezed)
- Fortified Cereals
Take a moment to ensure that you’re getting your maximum needed vitamin D intake. Do you have any thoughts or tips on how you can increase the production of vitamin D in your life? Feel free to share with us in the comments below!
Kavata Kithome is an advocate for living your best life, full of health and longevity. While working closely with gym owners and personal trainers, she was able to sculpt a well-rounded view of fitness and understands how to incorporate it with a healthy balanced diet. She is a regular contributor to the One More Step Lifestyle brand.
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