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The Impact of Low Vitamin D Levels: Symptoms, Risks, and Solutions












Vitamin D, sunshine vitamin, is a nutrient your body needs for building and maintaining healthy bones. Calcium, the component of bones, can only be absorbed if Vitamin D is present.


Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that is stored in the body for long periods of time, unlike water-soluble vitamins. The different forms include Vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol) and D3 (cholecalciferol).



  • Vitamin D2 is made from plants and is found in fortified foods and some supplements

  • Vitamin D3 is naturally produced in the human body and is found in animal foods

  • Measured in micrograms (mcg) or international units (IU)

  • One microgram is equal to 40 IU



 






What are the 3 Sources of Vitamin D?














FOODS


  • Fatty fish (trout, salmon, mackerel, tuna) naturally contain Vitamin D

  • Egg yolks

  • Cheese

  • Beef liver

  • Cod Liver Oil

  • Mushrooms contain a small amount

  • Fortified milk, cereal, juices (vitamin D was added)



SUNLIGHT



  • The body produces Vitamin D when skin is exposed to sunlight

  • People who don't get enough sunlight and people over 65 are at a risk for deficiency

  • People with darker skin may have lower levels because the pigment in skin (melanin) reduces Vitamin D production




SUPPLEMENTS



  • The recommended daily dosage for adults are:

    • 600 IU for adults under 70 years old

    • 800 IU for adults over 70 years old





 







What are the Major Health Benefits of Vitamin D?



  • Bone Health

  • Improves Heart and Muscle Function

  • Boosts Immunity

  • Regulate Blood Sugar

  • Aids in Calcium Absorption

  • Boosts Cognition, Mood and Sleep

  • Reduces Cancer Risks




 






What are the Symptoms of Vitamin D Deficiency?







  • Muscle Pains/Weakness

  • Bone & Joint Pain

  • Fatigue

  • Mood Changes

  • Depression

  • Recurring Infections

  • Frequent Coughs/Colds

  • Loss of Appetite

  • Pale Skin & Dark Circles

  • Sleep Changes

  • No Symptoms (most people)



 






What are the Causes of Vitamin D Deficiency?







  • Limited Exposure to Sunlight

  • Darker Skin-Higher Risk

  • Kidney & Digestive Tract Medical Problems










 






How Is Vitamin D Deficiency Diagnosed and Treated?




  • Testing is done by blood test

  • Treatments are Vitamin D supplements & Diet














 





What are the Symptoms of Vitamin D Toxicity?





Vitamin D toxicity can occur if you get too much Vitamin D. The main symptom of Vitamin D toxicity is hypercalcemia, too much calcium in the blood. Symptoms include:




  • heart rhythm problems

  • kidney stones and kidney damage

  • nausea

  • constipation

  • poor appetite

  • weight loss

  • weakness

  • confusion and disorientation



 



Vitamin D is a nutrient that our body needs to sustain a healthy life. It is important to get enough sunlight and eat a healthy diet to prevent Vitamin D deficiency. Always consult your physician before taking any medications and/or supplements.






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