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Vitamin D deficiency symptoms are usually minor in the beginning. In most people, vitamin D deficiency shows no symptoms in the beginning, and that is why it is often left untreated. People are not even aware that they are deficient in vitamin D. They usually find out about the deficiency when they start experiencing serious problems.
Vitamin D is very important, when it comes to bones, growth and health in general. It is produced in the skin during the sun exposure. Although vitamin D is found in certain foods, these amounts are not satisfactory and you cannot get your daily dose of vitamin D just through these foods. However, foods that contain vitamin D will certainly be helpful. They include animal meat, dairy products, eggs, fish and fortified cereals.
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● In people who have low vitamin D levels, but still do not have serious deficiency, there can be no symptoms at all. Even if the symptoms occur, they will be mild and include pains and aches.
● A severe lack of this vitamin can lead to symptoms that are more serious. These include osteomalacia and rickets. Rickets is seen in children, whereas osetomalacia is a similar condition that affects adults.
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● Low vitamin D levels in babies manifest through muscle cramps, breathing difficulties and seizures. Levels of calcium are also low in such cases. Breathing difficulties result from soft ribcage and weak muscles.
● Children who are severely deficient in vitamin D can have soft leg bones and soft skull. When the legs become curved, this condition is called “rickets”.
● Tooth delay is one of the common symptoms of vitamin D deficiency in children.
● Low levels of vitamin D can lead to irritability.
● Poor development and growth can be caused by vitamin D deficiency. Children who lack vitamin D usually start walking very late.
● Children who have low levels of vitamin D are vulnerable to infections, especially when it comes to respiratory system.
● Cardiomyopathy is a serious problem that can occur because of vitamin D deficiency.
Vitamin D Deficiency in Adults
The most common symptoms in adults include:
● Pains and aches
● Severe pain (if the deficiency is severe)
● Bone pains (in the hips, ribs, feet and pelvis)
Vitamin D deficiency is treated with supplements of vitamin D. These supplements can also be used for prevention. People who are at risk of becoming deficient in vitamin D are advised to use supplements every day.
Who Is at Risk?
● Breast-feeding mothers and pregnant women are at risk of getting deficient in vitamin D.
● Babies who only feed on breast milk. Vitamin D can be found in human milk, but these amounts are not satisfactory. If you are breastfeeding your baby, you will have to take supplements of vitamin D, and you will also have to use formula milk for your baby, besides your breast milk. Talk to your doctor about other supplements that can be included in your baby’s diet.
● People whose sun exposure is limited are at risk of becoming deficient in vitamin D. If you live in a country with cold climate conditions, you may lack this vitamin. People who are housebound (for any reason) can also have low vitamin D levels because their sun exposure is limited.
● If you have dark skin, your may be at risk of getting vitamin D deficiency. Melanin acts as sun block, so if your skin is darker, you will need to spend more time in the sun, compared to people who have white skin.
● Using the sunscreen all the time can make your vitamin D levels low, because these products prevent the sunrays from reaching your skin. Of course, when the sun is strong, you need to use some protection for your skin. If you have a child, make sure not to let him play outside, if the sun is too strong. Avoid the midday sun during the summer, because it can cause skin burns.
● Individuals who suffer from Crohn’s disease, kidney disease and celiac disease can be at risk of getting deficient in vitamin D. In such cases, the body cannot handle vitamin D properly.
● People who use barbiturates, carbamazepine, primidone, and similar medications, can be at risk.
● Vegetarians are also at risk, because they do not eat foods that contain vitamin D. This vitamin is contained in foods like meat, eggs, dairy products and fish. As you can see, these are all animal-derived items. If you are a vegetarian, you must talk to your nutritionist about other ways to get vitamin D. You will certainly have to spend time in the sun, and you will probably be given some vitamin D supplements.
What Foods Are High in Vitamin D?
If you are wondering what foods are high in vitamin D, here you can find some answers. Vitamin D is actually a group of fat-soluble vitamins. Vitamin D2 and D3 are the major types of vitamin D. However, when we say “vitamin D”, we usually think D3. This type of vitamin D is considered more potent than D2. It is naturally produced in the skin of humans and animals, during the sun exposure.
Doctors say that white-skinned people should spend 20-25 minutes in the sun, without any sunscreen, to have vitamin D produced in their skin. The skin should be exposed to sunrays at least 3 times a week. Dark-skinned people need to spend more time in the sun than white-skinned people do. This skin type has more melanin that acts like a sun block, so more time is needed for sunrays to get into the skin. People who live in cold weather countries, and they are dark-skinned, are at higher risk of becoming deficient in vitamin D.
Older people can lack this vitamin; as we age, our bodies become less capable of converting this vitamin into its active form.
Sunlight is definitely the best source of vitamin D. However, if you cannot get enough sunlight, there are other options. Consuming foods that contain vitamin D can help you improve your vitamin D levels. Although these quantities are not sufficient, they are certainly helpful.
Foods High in Vitamin D
● Cod liver oil
● Fish oil
● Formula milk
● Fortified cereals
● Dairy products
As you can see, nearly all of these foods are animal-derived. Some people do not consume animal-based products (for religious beliefs, health problems, or other reasons); therefore, many people are at risk of becoming deficient in vitamin D. Vegetarians can consume soy products or fortified cereals, but these quantities cannot meet our daily needs.
Some people are strongly advised to avoid most of these foods because they have certain health problems (for example, gallbladder patients are advised not to eat these foods). That is why sunlight remains the best natural source of vitamin D.
Now, if you live in a cold weather country, you may be at risk of becoming deficient in vitamin D. If you are a vegetarian who lives in a cold climate, your vitamin D levels are likely to be quite low.
The best thing you can do is visit your doctor and consider vitamin D supplements. It is not recommended to take any supplements on your own. Before you start using any of these products, you need to go to your doctor and have your vitamin D levels measured. Based on these results, you will be given proper supplements. If your vitamin D levels are extremely low, you will have to take large doses. In such cases, vitamin D supplements are used twice a week or twice a month, depending on your condition.
It is very important to prevent vitamin D levels from getting too low. Vitamin D deficiency can cause serious complications, especially when it comes to bones. This condition can affect your blood pressure, cholesterol levels, calcium absorption, etc. In children, vitamin D deficiency can lead to serious bone deformities (known as rickets), tooth delay, poor growth and development, and it can also cause problems in adults. According to some researches, vitamin D can help in preventing various diseases, such as breast cancer, prostate cancer, multiple sclerosis, osteoporosis, and depression.
What is vitamin D good for? All of us have heard of vitamin D, but many people still do not know how important this vitamin is. Vitamin D is not a single vitamin – it is a group of vitamins, called fat-soluble secosteroids.
What Is Vitamin D?
Vitamin D is actually a pro-hormone that can be synthesized in the human body during the sun exposure. In fact, sunlight is the best source of vitamin D. Although there are foods that contain this vitamin, sun exposure remains the best way to get vitamin D. It is not recommended to spend time in the sun if it is too strong, but it is highly recommended to expose your skin to the morning sun (or after 5 pm). If you are white-skinned, twenty minutes will be quite enough for your skin to produce vitamin D. If you are dark-skinned, you will need thirty minutes (or more). Dark skin needs more time to synthesize vitamin D, which is why people with dark skin have more chances to become deficient in vitamin D.
What Is Vitamin D #Good For?
● Vitamin D is very important for normal development of the human body. However, its role is not only limited to growth and development; it can be very helpful in preventing some illnesses. People who lack vitamin D are at risk of developing various problems.
● Vitamin D is necessary for proper bone mineralization. It is closely related to absorption of phosphorus and calcium in the human body. Low levels of vitamin D can cause bone deformities, bone softening, rickets in children, osteomalacia in adults, osteoporosis, poor quality of teeth in children, tooth delay in infants, etc.
● Vitamin D is important for immune system. Vitamin D deficiency can lead to problems with immune system, making it weak; therefore, the body becomes unable to fight infections. During the winter months, vitamin D levels are lower because we don’t get enough sunlight. That is exactly the time when most of us get influenza. Of course, low vitamin D is not the only cause of influenza during the winter season, but it is certainly a contributing factor.
● Vitamin D deficiency can affect your energy levels. This is quite common during the winter months. You have probably noticed that your energy levels are lower during winter.
● Long-term deficiency can lead to depression. This problem can be very serious, especially if vitamin D deficiency is left untreated. People usually think that depression has occurred for some other reason; many people don’t even know that depression and vitamin D levels in blood are connected with each other.
● Vitamin D can be helpful in cancer prevention. Women who are at risk of getting breast cancer are advised to use vitamin D for prevention. In men, vitamin D can be used for prostate cancer prevention.
● People who suffer from cardiovascular disease are often advised to take vitamin D. According to some researches, vitamin D deficiency can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. It can also lead to increased cholesterol levels in blood. The studies have shown that cholesterol levels are likely to get lower during the summer season and higher during the winter months.
It is important to control your vitamin D levels, especially during winter. You can do several things to keep your vitamin D levels normal: you can consume foods that naturally contain this vitamin and you can use vitamin D supplements. If you live in a cold weather country, it is important to talk to your doctor about vitamin D supplements. For people whose sun exposure is limited, this can be the only way to get sufficient amounts of vitamin D.
Facts about Vitamin D
f you are looking for some facts about vitamin D, read our article. We will tell you all about this important vitamin and its benefits. Vitamin D is actually a group of vitamins, called fat-soluble secosteroids. There are two major forms of vitamin D. The first form is called ergocalciferol (D2), and it is created by fungi. It is available in the form of supplements, but it is not as popular as vitamin D3.
Vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) is what most of us call “vitamin D”. It is naturally produced in the skin of humans, during the sun exposure. This form of vitamin D is found in some foods, such as milk products, animal meat, egg yolk and fish oil. Fortified breakfast cereals also contain this form of vitamin D. The amounts found in these foods are valuable, but they simply cannot fulfill your daily requirements. If you wanted to get recommended daily dose of vitamin D from these foods, you would have to eat a lot of eggs, meat or fish every day, and that would be bad for your health. These foods are healthy, but only if consumed in normal quantities. Therefore, sunrays remain the best natural source of vitamin D. The problem can occur during the winter months, when the weather is rainy or snowy, without any sun outside. During that time, many people lack vitamin D.
What Is Vitamin D Deficiency?
Vitamin D deficiency occurs when vitamin D levels in the body get too low. This condition is usually asymptomatic in the beginning, so most people don’t know they lack this vitamin. The symptoms will occur eventually; however, by that time, the person will be seriously deficient in vitamin D. The most common signs include:
● Pain in muscles
● Soft bones
● Easy fracturing
● Rickets in children
● Osteomalacia in adults
Vitamin D deficiency can increase the risk of:
● Multiple sclerosis
● High blood pressure in people who are predisposed to hypertension;
● Problems in patients who suffer from diabetes
● Certain types of cancer
The Importance of Vitamin D
● Vitamin D is necessary for normal growth and development. It is needed for proper mineralization of bones.
● Vitamin D is necessary for proper absorption of calcium and phosphorus. These processes play an important role in the development of bones. If vitamin D levels are low, bone density can decrease, which can lead to osteoporosis. Postmenopausal women are prone to these problems.
● Vitamin D strengthens the immune system. It will help the body protect itself from various infections (bacteria, viruses and fungi). Vitamin D deficiency can significantly decrease the body’s ability to fight infections.
● Vitamin D is also used as a part of therapy in patients with tuberculosis. There will have to be more studies to determine how effective vitamin D can be in treating tuberculosis.
● According to some researches, vitamin D could be helpful in treating HIV. This assumption is yet to be confirmed.
● Vitamin D deficiency can lead to depression. People who are going through depression, but cannot find any explanation for depression, should check their vitamin D levels.
● Vitamin D is believed to be helpful in cancer prevention. More studies will have to be carried out to confirm this, but experts have a reason to believe that vitamin D can be effective as a part of cancer treatment. Vitamin D deficiency is one of the factors that increase the risk of some types of cancer.
● Vitamin D is considered helpful in prevention of cardiovascular disease and type II diabetes.
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