Signs of Vitamin D deficiency might appear as something else that gets masked in the body for years. Yet this one vitamin shortage can be extremely detrimental to your health on a number of levels. Vitamin D is responsible for a host of issues in the body, many of which people aren’t aware of. To make sure you’re getting enough of this crucial nutrient, read on to find out what the actual signs of Vitamin D deficiency are.
1. Bone Pain
One of the major signs of Vitamin D deficiency is bone pain. VItamin D is responsible for aiding calcium absorption by your bones to help keep them strong. Fragile and weak bones may ache or be painful. Your body might be getting good sources of calcium, but if you’re aren’t getting enough Vitamin D to aid the absorption, calcium can be excreted due to competing minerals like magnesium. It’s best to consume a Vitamin D supplement if you don’t eat eggs, fish, fish oil, or get at least 20 minutes of sun everyday. A 5,000 I.U. supplement is the upper limit and the daily recommended amounts are 400 I.U. You can also buy fortified milk and nondairy milks with added Vitamin D, as well as other fortified foods.
2. Cognitive Impairment
Vitamin D is also responsible for a great number of activities in the brain. It can help trigger cognitive function among a host of other things. If you have a hard time concentrating on everyday tasks, a Vitamin D deficiency might be something you want to consider.
Depression is an issue many women deal with on a day to day basis. Most of us don’t get near the recommended amount of sun we need to, therefore are naturally prone to becoming deficient in this crucial vitamin. If you eat a healthy diet, exercise, and generally have no other issues causing your depression, you might not be getting enough Vitamin D. Consult your doctor about a supplement, or get at least 20 minutes of sunlight per day.
4. Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes
Studies have now linked diabetes, both Type 1 and Type 2, to a shortage of Vitamin D. Vitamin D can assist the way glucose is metabolized, therefore causing poor blood sugar levels to occur if there is a shortage. Since this vitamin also affects depression, many people may overeat out of depression, causing the diabetes to occur. Research is still underway on this issue, but is something to consider if you’re at risk, or currently have diabetes.
Though researchers aren’t clear how yet, they have also linked cancer to a Vitamin D deficiency. It has been linked to all types of cancer ranging from breast cancer, prostate cancer, colon cancer, and pancreatic cancers.
6. Bone Disease
In children, bone disease is known as rickets, and in adults it’s known as osteomalacia. Both issues mean weakening of the bones, and can cause serious health issues, even impairing the ability to walk or sit down. Bone health is incredibly important and when enough Vitamin D and calcium are not consumed, especially together, bone disease may occur.
Obesity is one sign and cause of Vitamin D deficiency in the same token. Since Vitamin D shortage is linked to depression and diabetes, many people dealing with obesity are often affected. Yet this vitamin shortage can also contribute to obesity as well, furthering the problem even more. Obesity can occur from many issues, but if you deal with this, no matter what you try, you might consider talking to your doctor about your diet and any nutritional deficiencies you might have.
Vitamin D comes in two forms, Vitamin D2 and Vitamin D3. Vitamin D3 is the preferred form for the human body, and most easily absorbed. Vitamin D2 is much less effective, yet unfortunately, is also the type of Vitamin D found in most all fortified products on the market like nondairy milks, cheeses, cereals, etc. If you want to consume Vitamin D3, you’ll need to consider a supplement, as well as eat animal foods like eggs, liver, fish and fish oil, and milk or yogurt from dairy cows. I do suggest buying organic when you can of all animal foods, and buying wild fish to ensure the cleanest, most nutrient dense version of these foods. Also, be aware a low fat diet can hurt your absorption of this crucial vitamin. Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin, therefore only absorbed when enough dietary fat is consumed. Do you take Vitamin D as a supplement, or get yours through food?