What are the health benefits of vitamin D
When you go outside in the sun, your body makes vitamin D. Some foods and supplements can also help a person get more vitamin D.
Vitamin D is important for keeping bones and teeth in good shape. It also helps control inflammation and the way the immune system works, among many other important jobs in the body.
Vitamin D is not a vitamin, despite what its name says. It is a hormone or prohormone.
This article talks about the benefits of vitamin D, what happens to the body when people don’t get enough, and how to get more vitamin D.
What vitamin D does for the body
Vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium through the intestines and keeps the right amount of calcium and phosphorus in the blood, which is important for healthy bone mineralization.
Children who don’t get enough vitamin D can get rickets, which makes their bones soften and makes them look like they have bowlegs. In the same way, osteomalacia is a sign of a lack of vitamin D in adults. Trusted Source or making the bones softer. The symptoms of osteomalacia are weak muscles and weak bones
Getting enough vitamin D may help the immune system work well and lower the risk of autoimmune diseases.
Researchers believe that vitamin D is an important part of how the immune system works. They think that a long-term lack of vitamin D may be linked to autoimmune diseases like diabetes, asthma, and rheumatoid arthritis, but more research is needed to confirm the link.
Researchers have found that vitamin D has a positive effect on the immune response of human cells in test tubes, but they have not yet been able to prove this in controlled human trials.
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Even though vitamin D can be made by the body, some people are more likely to become deficient than others. Some things that can affect this are:
Pigmentation in the skin makes it harder for the body to take in the sun’s ultraviolet B (UVB) rays. For the skin to make vitamin D, it needs to take in sunlight.
Not getting enough sun: People who live in the north, in places with a lot of pollution, on night shifts, or at home should try to get their vitamin D from food as much as possible.
Breastfeeding: The American Academy of Pediatrics says that all breastfed babies should get 400 international units (IU) of vitamin D by mouth every day.
Older adults: As people get older, their skin loses some of its ability to make vitamin D. Older people may also stay inside more.
People with conditions that make it hard for them to absorb fat: Vitamin D dissolves in fat, so the body can only get it when it absorbs fats from food. Conditions that make it hard to absorb fat can make it harder to get enough vitamin D from food.
People who are fat: When a person has a lot of body fat, it can make it harder for the body to take in vitamin D from the skin.
People who have had a gastric bypass: This surgery skips over a part of the upper intestine that absorbs a lot of vitamin D. This way around can lead to a lack.
Most people who don’t get enough vitamin D don’t have any signs or symptoms. But a chronic lack of calcium can cause a disease called hypocalcemia and a condition called hyperparathyroidism. In hyperparathyroidism, the parathyroid glands create an imbalance of hormones that raises the blood calcium levels and makes bones weak, especially in older people.
bone pain fatigue
muscles that twitch muscles that are weak
myalgias, or pain in the muscles; arthralgias, or stiffness in the joints;
If you don’t get enough vitamin D for a long time, it could cause problems like:
neurological diseases ifections
Some cancers, like breast, prostate, and colon cancers, start in the
Vitamin D in infants
During childhood and early childhood, bones grow quickly. Because of this, it is important for babies to get enough vitamin D.
Rickets can be caused by a chronic lack of vitamin D. Rickets is a softening of bone tissue that can lead to abnormal bones and joints.
Children who don’t get enough vitamin D are also more likely to have high blood pressure and hypertension. A study from 2018 found a possible link between low levels of vitamin D and stiff arterial walls in children.
The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology (AAAI) thinks there is a link between not getting enough vitamin D and having a higher risk of becoming allergic.
For example, children who live closer to the equator are less likely to be taken to the hospital because of allergies and are given fewer EpiPens. Also, they are less likely to have an allergy to peanuts.
Vitamin D in pregnancy
A 2022 review
Trusted Source says that pregnant women who don’t get enough vitamin D may be more likely to get preeclampsia and give birth early.
Researchers found in a 2020 review study that there may be a link between higher vitamin D levels during pregnancy and a lower risk of preeclampsia and early birth. But scientists need well-designed clinical trials with vitamin D supplements to better understand the links.
Some research has linked not getting enough vitamin D to gestational diabetes. Treating a lack of vitamin D may also lower the risk of bacterial vaginosis in pregnant women who don’t have any symptoms. But different studies found no link between taking vitamin D supplements and preventing bacterial vaginosis.
There may be a link between getting enough vitamin D during pregnancy and a lower chance that the baby will have asthma or food allergies when they grow up. But the evidence is not conclusive, and more research needs to be done.