With Summer almost nearing its end, the weather is still beautiful and inviting to the outdoor lifestyle. One question many ask themselves is how much is too much or too little Vitamin D…
Did you know that Vitamin D is like a Hormone ?
We make it in our body rather than absorb it from our diet and is essential for many functions in the body because nearly every tissue and cell type have Vitamin D receptors – meaning high levels are needed for optimal health.
A major function of Vitamin D is its role in helping the body absorb calcium. If Vitamin D levels are low, it will result in soft bones. This could result in skeletal deformities or osteoporosis. Most people are very aware that you need adequate calcium in the diet for strong bones and teeth, however without adequate Vitamin D the calcium cannot be used appropriately.
What are some of the health issues caused by lack of Vitamin D?
Many symptoms are subtle, and often people with low Vitamin D levels are unaware. A simple blood test is the best and most effective way to check your Vitamin D status. The most common deficiency symptoms are: muscle/joint pain and weakness, fatigue, poor immune system, and asthma in children, and depression.
Does the sun guarantee Vitamin D absorption?
Unfortunately spending time in the sun is not a guarantee of adequate Vitamin D levels…researchers are still unsure on the exact mechanism of Vitamin D production. Some people are able to maintain good levels with a small amount of sunlight exposure, for others it doesn’t seem to be as effective. The health of your kidney, liver and gut also play a major part in converting Vitamin D from sunlight into its usable form by your body.
What about food choices?
Some common food sources that may contribute to Vitamin D production are fish oils, egg yolks and beef liver. Maintaining adequate Vitamin D levels are essential especially for athletes, along with aiding the regulation of electrolytes, protein synthesis and strong immune function. Recent research has been focused on Vitamin D’s role in conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, multiple sclerosis and cancer. It has also being linked to assisting with weight-loss.
We still have so much to learn about this crucial nutrient and so I strongly recommend having a routine Vitamin D test to determine if there is a risk of deficiency. Supplementing with Vitamin D is a simple and cost effective option for those at risk. If Vitamin D levels are very low and you are exposed to adequate sunshine, I strongly recommend my two week detox to support kidney and liver function.
If you would like more information on Vitamin D please call me to organise a personal consultation.