Do you feel tired constantly, suffer from prolonged periods of body ache and frequently experience “the blues?” Studies show that Indians run a high risk of Vitamin D deficiency and are oblivious to it!
Deficiency of this Vitamin (which is really a hormone!) is widespread in India and people of all ages are prone to this malady which has been made worse by the increased use of commercially-produced sunscreens that inhibit the production of Vitamin D by up to 95%.
Exposure to sunlight is essential to trigger its production (hence the moniker “Vitamin Sunshine”) as this nutrient is found in very few foods. Sunlight is vital for the absorption of calcium that results in healthy bone growth and development, a well-functioning immune system and is essential to mental well-being. Read on to recognize the signs, stop this dearth in its tracks and return to a healthier you!
- Your muscles feel sore constantly and you feel tired all the time. You also experience fatigue, fever, and headaches quite regularly.
- You suffer from frequent and oft-repeated instances of respiratory infections (pneumonia, bronchitis), ear infections and skin infections. This is a glaring sign of a compromised immune system.
- You have recurring episodes of bacterial infections like Candida which although quite harmless when the Immune system is functioning properly, can turn serious and migrate to other areas of the body.
Vitamin D promotes hormone health and a deficiency would result in hormonal imbalance caused by a sharp spike in the hormone Parathyroid.
Every cell in the body has Vitamin D receptors and a deficiency can have significant psychological consequences as well. If you struggle with emotional ups and downs that worsen with the seasonal drop in temperatures (and as a result, a reduced amount of time outdoors) a drop in serotonin levels is what you might be experiencing.
Vitamin D is necessary to absorb Calcium, without which one would suffer from soft, malformed, brittle bones known as rickets in children and osteoporosis in adults which can lead to frequent bone fractures and other more serious issues. Women face the risk of facing severe menopause symptoms as a result of low Vitamin D levels.
Optimum levels of Vitamin D are crucial for dental health as well. If you have periodontal disease, gum bleeds, and cavities all of which can eventually lead to a loss of teeth, this is a cause of great concern that you must not treat lightly.
Weight gain/obesity is another symptom of a Vitamin D deficiency. Due to the effects of globalization obesity, which was once associated with high-income countries, it has now ballooned into a health crisis of international proportions.
High blood pressure and heart disease may be linked to a Vitamin D deficiency as well although studies have not proved conclusive as yet. Having said that, Vitamin D is a highly vital nutrient that is critical to overall well-being.
Last on this list, but extremely crucial to self-image and our expectations as to how people look at and consider us – hair loss. Clinical research has provided some insight into how low levels of this Vitamin may be linked to some types of hair loss. However, these are yet to be established as clear and conclusive evidence.
Vitamin D and its deficiencies are perhaps among the least interesting must-reads on our list but as pointed out above, not one to be taken lightly. It is connected to the well-being of many vital organs, body parts, and functions. Paying close attention to scientific research in this matter will not only help us take necessary precautions to ward off risks but also keep us alert to new and improved curative measures.