5 benefits of vitamin D

It’s not surprising that Supplements It has gained popularity in recent years. If feeling better and living longer can be achieved by taking the pill, why not all of us take a chance?

Enter Vitamin D, a key nutrient that not only supports healthy immune function, but also boosts our bones, brains, and more. Before you start taking vitamin D supplements, you should know what to expect — and the potential risks.

Read more: Best Vitamin Subscription of 2022

What is vitamin D?

Your body needs vitamin D for a number of its vital processes, from building healthy bones to regulating certain cellular functions. It affects your mind, skin, muscle function, and more.

In terms of bone health, vitamin D plays an important role because it Maintains calcium and phosphorous balance By enhancing absorption. Vitamin D is usually added to milk to increase the absorption of calcium that occurs through the small intestine.

Vitamin D comes in two primary forms: D2 (ergocalciferol) and D3 (cholecalciferol). they are working somewhat similarly In your body, though, D3 is more bioavailable and therefore more effective at raising and maintaining adequate vitamin D levels in your bloodstream.

Good news: Your body already has the ability to make vitamin D on its own when a chemical in your skin is exposed to direct sunlight. The bad news: Most people can’t produce as much vitamin D as their bodies need. This becomes especially true with limited sun exposure during the winter months when days get shorter and you spend less time outdoors. Those at risk of developing a vitamin D deficiency include people with darker skin, fat malabsorption disorders, inflammatory bowel disease, or the elderly.

Without enough of this vitamin, you are more prone to stress fractures. Some people also experience fatigue, aches and pains with a vitamin D deficiency.

If you think you may have this deficiency, ask your doctor to order a blood test. They can help you determine if you are deficient in this vitamin and, if so, the best way to increase your levels. Some people benefit from adding more vitamin D-rich foods and drinks to their diet, while others need a vitamin D supplement.

Raw salmon steak

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Add vitamin D to your diet

If you want a safe and risk-free way to get more of these nutrients into your body, stock up on foods with plenty of vitamin D.

  • tuna
  • trout
  • salmon
  • sardines
  • salted fish
  • mackerel
  • yolk
  • mushroom
  • Shrimp
  • cheese
  • beef liver

You can also find foods and drinks fortified with this vitamin. Remember that your body cannot absorb calcium without it. As a result, you’ll often find it in milk and yogurt. Check the packaging. It should specifically say something like “fortified with vitamin D”.

You may also find D-fortified cereal, oatmeal and orange juice. In other words, food manufacturers seem to have decided that a healthy dose of vitamin D is a great way to start the day. Also, these foods are promoted because they are affordable and available to most people.

You can also get vitamin D from sunlight. But sunscreen blocks this physical process. To protect yourself from skin cancer while increasing vitamin D production, you might consider spending limited time outside (such as 15 minutes) without sunscreen each day.

If you do a blood test and find that you are deficient in this vitamin, you can try switching to a diet rich in D and getting some sunlight. If another test shows you’re still low, it’s probably time to start exploring the many benefits of vitamin D supplementation.

Food products, sunshine and vitamin D in capsules and various sources of vitamin D concept

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Vitamin D benefits

Whether you combine food and sunlight or add vitamin D supplements to your diet, getting enough of this nutrient makes a huge difference to your body. Specifically, adequate vitamin D can provide:

stronger bones

Studies show Vitamin D plays an important role in the body’s absorption of calcium. And as you already know, calcium means strong, healthy bones. This is why doctors often prescribe vitamin D supplements to children with afflictions rickets and people with inherited bone disorders.

Since we all have bones, it’s worth checking back that you’re getting enough. Adequate intake of vitamin D can help Preventing and managing osteoporosis.

Reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes

Across the country, heart disease is The main cause of death. While many factors play a role here, studies have linked low levels of vitamin D and:

  • heart disease
  • brain attack
  • Hypertension
  • Type 2 diabetes

If you’re looking for a way to defend yourself against some of the country’s most common health conditions, it might be time to consider these key vitamin D benefits.

Stronger immune system

While low levels of vitamin D can make you more likely to get sick, the opposite is also true. This vitamin works on Activate your T cellsThis helps your body fight infection. This means that the benefits of vitamin D supplementation include a reduced risk of disease, along with the possibility of developing it Reduce your risk For the treatment of diseases of the unregulated immune system such as rheumatoid arthritis, asthma and diabetes.

more balanced mood

Studies link Vitamin D deficiency and depression. Furthermore, even if you don’t live with major depressive disorder, low levels of vitamin D can contribute to depressive symptoms such as low mood and apathy.

Decreased cognitive decline

Speaking of your brain, vitamin D may help. studies There appears to be a relationship between vitamin D deficiency and decreased cognitive function. Beyond that, early search It suggests that low levels of vitamin D can contribute to cognitive decline as we age.

In short, vitamin D supplements may help you stay sharp now and over the years.

Disadvantages of vitamin D supplements

All this said, you can definitely get a lot of good things when it comes to vitamin D supplementation.

While experts recommend About 600 IU of vitamin D per day for most adults, an intake of 4,000 IU per day or more is considered unsafeEspecially for those taking nutritional supplements without a known vitamin deficiency. These higher doses, especially over a longer period of time, are associated with:

Hypercalcemia

Taking too much vitamin D can lead to HypercalcemiaThis means that you have too much calcium in your blood. This can cause kidney stones and contribute to hardening of the blood vessels, lungs, and heart.

Vomiting and nausea

Excess vitamin D supplements can upset your stomach, leading to nausea and vomiting. In fact, if you have recently started taking these supplements and are feeling nauseous, it could be a sign that you are overdoing it.

drying

Taking extremely high levels of vitamin D can cause toxicity. One of the primary symptoms of vitamin D toxicity is severe dehydration.

confusion

While some of the biggest benefits of vitamin D supplementation are centered on your brain, too much of it can cause the opposite effect. People who take an excessive amount often report confusion and confusion.

woman sucking the sun

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Should You Take Vitamin D Supplements?

Before you start taking vitamin D supplements, get a blood test from your doctor. They can tell you if you have a vitamin D deficiency. And even if you are, adjusting your diet and spending a short amount of time outdoors each day without sunscreen may be enough to tip the scales. These options eliminate the risk of vitamin D toxicity.

If you’re still deficient in these key nutrients after eating more D-rich foods and getting some sunlight, supplements can help. Your body needs vitamin D to keep your bones strong, boost your immune response, and support the health of your heart and brain. Just be sure to monitor your intake levels. 600 to 800 IU daily should be sufficient, unless your doctor instructs you otherwise.

The information in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended to be health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have about a medical condition or health goals.