Vitamin D (aka the sunshine vitamin) is vital for one’s overall health. And, in the case you have been staying indoors away from the sun, or are following a stringent vegan diet, you may be at a risk of having vitamin D deficiency.
That’s right! Vitamin D deficiency is quite common. And, it has been reported that around 42% of US adults don’t have sufficient vitamin D in their blood. It’s also estimated that around 1 billion people all over the globe have low levels of the vitamin in their blood making it a global health issue.
Are you wondering how the vitamin works? It almost works like a hormone. And, all cells in the body have a receptor for it. So, the moment your skin gets exposed to sunlight, the vitamin gets created from cholesterol. Apart from which, it is also found in specific foods like fortified dairy products (such as milk) or fatty fish. However, depending only on diet may not get you the sufficient vitamin. Vitamin D also supports calcium metabolism and helps the body absorb calcium from food and supplements to support the maintenance of healthy bones cells. Some of the other functions it supports include:
- Facilitates muscle health.
- Assists cell growth.
- Augments the immune system.
- Relieves inflammation.
- Regulates blood pressure.
Signs and Symptoms of Vitamin D Deficiency
Are you experiencing bone pain and muscle weakness? Well, it could imply vitamin D deficiency. Let’s quickly look at some of the common signs and symptoms of Vitamin D Deficiency.
- Falling sick or getting infected frequently.
- Exhaustion and tiredness.
- Thinning or brittle bones, osteoporosis, or recurrent bone fractures.
- Impaired wound healing.
- Hair loss.
- Decreased endurance.
- Muscle pain.
- High blood pressure.
- Cognitive impairment in older adults.
- Severe asthma in children.
- Gut issues.
- Head sweating.
- Unexplained infertility.
It is best to get tested for vitamin D via a simple blood test called the 25(OH)D. And, take precautionary care to get back the vitamin to desirable levels in the case a deficiency is indicated. The best strategies are spending around 15-20 minutes each day in natural sunlight, and including foods rich in vitamin D in your diet. You can also include vitamin D supplements as recommended by your doctor.
In conclusion, the signs and symptoms of vitamin D deficiency are usually subtle. And, you should keep a check on the levels so that you can improve your quality of life.