Vitamin D is a group of compounds that are responsible for increasing intestinal absorption of calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphate, and zinc.

It is a fat-soluble vitamin which is sometimes called sunshine vitamin as it is produced in the human body when it comes in contact with sunlight.

Vitamin D can affect up to 2,000 genes in the body.

Health risks of vitamin D deficiency in humans include:

Obesity

Fat in the body is absorbed by Vitamin D. If the body lacks vitamin D, there would be no compound to absorb the fat and this can lead to obesity.

Sweaty head

Constant sweaty head is a symptom of Vitamin D deficiency.

Excessive sweating in newborns due to neuromuscular irritability is a common, early symptom of vitamin D deficiency.

Gut trouble

If the body has a gastrointestinal condition that affects one’s ability to absorb fat, the body may experience lower absorption of fat-soluble vitamins like vitamin D which may include gut conditions and inflammatory bowel disease.

Other symptoms/deficiency are– increased risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer, asthma in children, deafness in adults, muscle pain/joint ache, stress fractures and diabetes Mellitus.

Causes of Vitamin D deficiency

Extremely dark skin

When you have more than the required melanin pigment on your skin, the skin is unable to tap vitamin D from sunlight.

Limited exposure to sunlight

The body produces vitamin D in its response to sunlight and when it is not adequately exposed to sunlight, the body might be at risk of vitamin D deficiency.

Lack of rich-in-vitamins foods

Inadequate consumption of food supplements rich in vitamins like milk, egg yolk, sardines, yoghurt and orange juice and vitamin D supplements.

Why the body needs vitamin D

Sufficient vitamin D intake can help boost blood levels and regulate healthy functioning of the body. Studies show that normal blood serum levels range from 50 to 100 micrograms per decilitre.

Healthy bones

The calcium which the body gets from vitamin D is essential for strong bones. It prevents soft bones and skeletal deformities.

Loss of weight

Vitamin D in the body acts as a sink that uses up excess fat. Several studies show that adding Vitamin D supplements to one’s diet helps lose weight.

Vitamin D fights depression

Studies have shown that vitamin D regulates one’s mood and helps fight depression.

Prevents heart disease

Vitamin D prevents heart disease and reduces your chances of contracting flu. A research carried out in 2014 also explains that vitamin D3 may slightly decrease the risk of cancer.



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