Many people experience symptoms such as fatigue, body aches, feeling low, mood swings, frequent sneezing, and sudden cold and cough. These symptoms can be caused by a variety of reasons, many times as a result of lowered immunity. One of the reasons one’s immunity system can be impaired is a deficiency of the so-called, “Sunshine Vitamin,” which is Vitamin D.
So, what is Vitamin D? Well, the scientific term is “Cholecalciferol,” and it is a unique fat-soluble vitamin. It is produced when your body is exposed to sunlight or ultraviolet (UV) light. It is then transported to the liver and the kidneys where it is converted into active 1, 25-dihydroxyvitamin D, also called “Calcitriol.” It is also a steroid hormone, which controls phosphorus, calcium, bone metabolism, and neuromuscular function.
Doctors can diagnose Vitamin D deficiency with a simple blood test. Different blood levels of Vitamin D mean different things. Here are some Vitamin D blood levels and what they mean.Vitamin D blood levels
- 0-10ng ml : Deficiency – likely to have health problems
- 10-20 ng/ml : Low levels
- 20-30 ng/ml : Maybe enough
- 40-50 ng/ml : Getting enough
- 50-60 ng/ml : Good range/ normal
- 60-70 ng/ml : High normal
- 80-90 ng/mg : Higher than a normal range
- 100 -150 ng/mg : Not toxic but considered too high
- <150 ng/mg : Levels considered toxic and may be damaging to your health
If you feel you are lacking in Vitamin D, you can add supplements to your diet that are rich in Vitamin D, such as a multivitamin, Cod liver oil capsules, and certain calcium products. You can also enjoy the sunshine for healthy Vitamin D levels – unless of course, you live in the Seattle area during the winter months.
While Vitamin D is not readily present in many foods, certain foods have been fortified with Vitamin D in the United States. Such foods are cow’s milk, yogurt, cereal, and orange juice.
Vitamin D is also sometimes added to a food or beverage that contains calcium. Vitamin D is needed for maximum absorption of calcium from the intestine, to build strong bones and teeth. If you do not have enough Vitamin D in your body, this may result in osteoporosis and low bone mass. It is estimated that about 40 million adults in the United States have, or are at risk for, developing osteoporosis.
There are different opinions on exactly how much Vitamin D you need. The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences has new recommendations based on international units (IUs) per day. IUs help experts determine recommended dose, deficiency levels, and toxicity for each person. The recommended IUs for Vitamin D are:
- Children and teens: 600 IU
- Adults up to age 70: 600 IU
- Adults over age 70: 800 IU
- Pregnant or breastfeeding women: 600 IU
There are several different reasons for Vitamin D deficiency. Dark skin with high melanin content acts as a barrier to UV rays. Therefore dark-skinned people need more sun exposure than those with lighter skins. Overweight people, as well as those over 50 years of age and above, make less Vitamin D. Also, kidney disease may hinder the conversion of Vitamin D into its active form. The other reasons for Vitamin D deficiency include the application of sunscreens and more time spent indoors (working, watching TV, playing video games, and so on).
Apart from the lack of sunlight and food deficiency, Vitamin D deficiency may also occur due to certain health conditions like Cystic Fibrosis, Celiac and Crohn’s diseases, and drug interactions. Vitamin D deficiency may also occur due to anticonvulsant and antiretroviral treatment, as well as by certain immunosuppressant drugs and due to hepatic or renal failure.
So, now you know why vitamin D is important and why you should ensure that you are getting enough of it. At Nelson Chiropractic, we work with you to ensure that you are in optimum health. We provide you with the care and information you need to help improve your quality of life.
For more information and to improve your overall health and well-being, contact Nelson Chiropractic at 425-867-1119, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or go to our website https://www.nelsonchiro.com.