The inevitable bling of materialism in our day-to-day lives is what brings us down to unhealthy living. Since we cannot always be mindful of how we are living, we will attract a good deal of health issues. However, these health problems often have hidden underlying causes that go unnoticed. Many of these pop up due to vitamin D deficiency, also medically known as hypovitaminosis D.
- Suggested read: 16 Rich Vitamin D Foods that You Should Include in Your Diet
Vitamin D is an essential requirement of our body. As small as the name may sound, or as unaware as people might be about it, the role it plays in our body is gigantic.
The lack or deficiency of it attracts health problems that you would think of as minor at first. In fact, you are likely to ignore the symptoms and take over-the-counter medications to address them, thinking they will subside over time.
For some people, there will not be any symptoms at all in the beginning, but as you remain deficit for longer periods, your body will show symptoms in the form of other illnesses.
Vitamin D deficiency signs and symptoms
Muscle and joint pain
You have been complaining of achy joints and muscles, thinking it might be a consequence of working overtime, some minor injury, or exhaustion. However, if this sustains for a longer time, it is not okay to ignore your body’s alarm system.
Hence, because of its deficiency, you may increase the risk of developing fibromyalgia.
Have you been sweating an abnormal amount from your head? If so, this calls for many problems like dehydration, lack of energy, low blood pressure making it a classic telltale and often an overlooked sign of vitamin D deficiency.
A normal amount of sweating is healthy, but when it happens even when you do not engage in enough body activity, the sign demands your attention.
Vitamin D is responsible for calcium absorption and thus bone strengthening. A lack, thereof, can result in bone pain and bone loss also leading to Osteoporosis or lower bone density. So next time you have back pain, or trouble climbing those stairs, don’t blame it on your age number.
Affinity to infections
If you are someone, who always ‘hosts’ welcome parties with recurrent colds and flu, then you may attribute it to the deficiency since vitamin D is important in strengthening our immune system.
Deficiency results in a weaker immune system prone to more pathogenic attacks, which our body is not ready to fight. This also results in slower recovery or healing of wounds or other health problems.
Vitamin D stimulates the production of dopamine and serotonin – the ‘feel good’ hormones. When you are deficient, your serotonin levels drop, making you feel blue, prone to unhealthy sleep patterns, lethargy, fatigue, poor concentration, mood swings, and poor performance in normal activities.
It can either happen in the form of depression or anxiety. Therefore, earlier treatment can stop the problems from aggravating.
A primary source for supporting cardiovascular health and regulating blood pressure, vitamin D deficiency promotes health risks related to heart diseases, heart attack, hypertension, blood pressure fluctuations, and stroke.
While you may account your incapacity to hold pee to a nervous bladder, chances are the deficiency of vitamin D affects the functioning of your kidney and bladder enormously, accounting for kidney disorders.
If you have gut problems like Crohn’s disease, Celiac disease or other problems like gluten intolerance or IBD (inflammatory bowel disease), you will have an impaired gut condition to absorb fat and thus absorb all fat-soluble vitamin D as well.
How our body makes vitamin D?
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that comes from sunlight or diet such as fatty fish, egg yolk, mushroom, or milk. Our body stores vitamin D in the body fats and oil. However, vitamin D is not directly accessible to our body.
It has to first undergo conversion through liver and kidneys so that we can fully reap its benefits. While diet and sunlight are a rich source of vitamin D, including them in your routine is not sufficient if –
- You have gastrointestinal problems, for example, Crohn’s Disease, Celiac Disease, IBD (Irritable Bowel Syndrome)
- Your kidneys are not optimally working to convert Vitamin D to its required form.
Chances are if you tell someone you have vitamin D deficiency, they will blame you for not getting out in the sun more often or not maintaining a proper diet even though you have painlessly tried to follow the two steps. In cases like this, your doctor will prescribe you vitamin D diet supplements.
How to measure vitamin D levels
If you think you nodded ‘yes’ to the above-listed symptoms, make no more delays in getting your vitamin D levels tested through the blood test called 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25 OH vitamin D). Early detection can save you much time, money and trouble. The chart here depicts the ideal levels of vitamin D in your body.
Source: Healthy Habits Hub
Vitamin D deficiency is a problem that many would label to be just ‘nothing’ whereas the health issues it attracts on the level of the whole body is scattered on a broad spectrum. While it is okay to get immediate treatment for symptoms you notice, make sure you get behind the cause responsible for it.