Vitamin D Deficiency Symptoms
Are you experiencing any vitamin D deficiency symptoms?
Could you have a vitamin D deficiency? Unless you spend every day soaking up the sun, eating wild salmon or take a supplement, low levels of vitamin D are likely.
Vitamin D deficiency is one of the most common vitamin deficiencies. Approximately 70 % of Americans are deficient in vitamin D! When low levels occur one might experience some of these vitamin D deficiency symptoms.
Your body can get vitamin D from the sun’s UV rays and through your diet and/or supplements.
Even with a healthy diet, it still can be difficult to maintain high enough levels to avoid a vitamin D deficiency. Even more so if you are not eating foods high in vitamin D. According to Dr. Bischoff-Ferrari of UZH, two servings of fatty fish would need to be consumed daily in order to get an adequate amount of vitamin D through your diet.
Especially around this time of year it is even harder to get enough vitamin D as sun exposure is an excellent source.
Even though the body will store vitamin D from the summer sun exposure for several months, typically by mid to late winter many become deficient.
With the cold winters up here in New England, I usually take a supplement to boost my vitamin D levels and to prevent any colds or getting the flu.
As we age, our ability to absorb vitamin D from the sun’s UV rays declines, which is why the elderly population is even more likely to have low levels and experience vitamin D deficiency symptoms.
Another reason so many do not get enough vitamin D is that they do not get enough from the sun’s rays. Many are misinformed and fear the sun for risk of skin cancer or overs use sunscreen.
When I went to visit my uncle this past summer, I was shocked when he said he never steps foot outside unless he is completely covered in sunscreen! Apparently, this is what his dermatologist instructed him to do to prevent skin cancer. Little did he know, his sunscreen was loaded with cancer causing ingredients itself. Luckily, after informing him of how absurd what his dermatologist told him, I was able to get him to change his ways.
The Importance of Vitamin D
Vitamin D is not only important for skeletal health as once thought, it is also a hormone and gene modulator. Vitamin D has a critical impact on the health and function of the body’s cells. It is also a potent cancer inhibitor as it improves cell differentiation, which can force cells into an anti-cancer state. Having adequate levels of vitamin D will help you avoid these vitamin D deficiency symptoms and diseases that may be caused by the deficiency.
How to Find Out If You Have a Vitamin D Deficiency
The best way to find out if you have a vitamin D deficiency is to take a blood test which will measure the level of vitamin D in your blood. If you experience any of these vitamin D deficiency symptoms, a blood test should be taken to determine if low vitamin D is the cause.
Vitamin D Deficiency Symptoms
Vitamin D deficiency symptoms can vary greatly, however, these aliments certainly point towards a deficiency.
1. The Flu
- Low levels of vitamin D significantly decrease your immune system. If you have have a weak immune system and often get colds or the flu, a vitamin D deficiency may be the cause. According to a study in the American Journal Clinical Nutrition children taking a very low dose of vitamin D were 42% less likely to get the flu. Vitamin D is now being used to prevent the flu.
2. Muscle Aches, Pains or Weakness
– Many with chronic muscle aches and pains have a vitamin D deficiency. A study of Arabic women with fibromyalagia found that the women were significantly deficient in vitamin D and when given a vitamin D supplement, recovery was observed. According to Michael Holick, the vitamin D deficiency symptom of muscle weakness is typically caused by low vitamin D as skeletal muscles require vitamin D receptors to be sustained by vitamin D.
3. Cardiovascular Disease
– Vitamin D deficiency has been linked to congestive heart failure. Those with a vitamin D deficiency were found to be 67% more likely of developing hypertension.
– Vitamin D has been found to be one of the most potent cancer inhibitors. Vitamin D deficiency has been associated with breast, ovarian, colon, and prostate cancer. Researchers at Georgetown University Medical Center found that increased doses of vitamin D were linked to 75 percent reduction in overall breast cancer growth and 50 percent reduction in tumor cases among those already having the disease.
– Researchers in Finland found that Vitamin D supplementation reduced the risk of getting type 1 diabetes by 80 percent.
There are many more possible vitamin D deficiency symptoms which can include fatigue, restless sleep, autoimmune diseases, constipation, headaches etc.
Have you experienced any health benefits from correcting a vitamin D deficiency or getting more sun?
Photo source: 1
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20219962 vitamin D deficiency symptoms