What is Vitamin D? What Are the Symptoms, Causes, and Benefits of Vitamin D Deficiency?

What is Vitamin D? What Are the Symptoms, Causes, and Benefits of Vitamin D Deficiency?
What is Vitamin D? What Are the Symptoms, Causes, and Benefits of Vitamin D Deficiency?

📩 04/01/2023 08:55

In medical language, calciferol is one of the types of fat-soluble vitamins that are stored in the liver and adipose tissue. It is divided into two types as D2 and D3. Vitamin D taken from the sun and food is transformed into a more effective chemical by changing the liver and kidneys. What are the symptoms of vitamin D deficiency? What are the causes of vitamin D deficiency? What happens with vitamin D deficiency? Which diseases does vitamin D deficiency cause? What are the harms of vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy? How many should vitamin D be? What is the daily vitamin D requirement? What are the benefits of vitamin D? What is vitamin D found in? What foods are vitamin D found in? What are the harms of high vitamin D levels? all in the details of the news ...

What are the symptoms of vitamin D deficiency?

Vitamin D deficiency affects all systems of the body and invites many diseases. Today's living conditions, working indoors, not performing outdoor activities enough, malnutrition increase vitamin D deficiency. Vitamin D deficiency is a factor that affects all age groups and causes important health problems.

Vitamin D deficiency can occur with various symptoms. The important detail here is that people watch themselves and take the necessary precautions. Vitamin D deficiency symptoms can be listed as follows:

  • General body pain
  • Fatigue
  • Difficulty walking (balance problem)
  • Bone pain
  • Loss of strength
  • Hair loss
  • Headache
  • Depression
  • Changeable mood
  • Insomnia
  • Pain in joints and fingers
  • Detention bruises
  • Excessive sweating
  • Difficulty losing weight
  • Constant cold

What are the causes of vitamin D deficiency?

Vitamin D deficiency can occur in the following situations;

  • Not consuming products rich in vitamin D
  • Inability to metabolize vitamin D
  • Reduced vitamin D excretion
  • Genetic diseases
  • Not spending enough time in ultraviolet B (UVB) sunlight

What happens with vitamin D deficiency?

Insufficient sunbathing and small amounts of vitamin D in natural foods Vitamin D deficiency It is one of the common causes. In response to the question 'What happens with insufficient vitamin D intake?'

  • A bone disease called osteomalasia seen in adulthood can be seen.
  • When vitamin D deficiency leads to bone diseases, muscle and bone pain may be experienced, and they may be more likely to break or break a bone.
  • Not getting enough vitamin D in babies and children can lead to rickets that cause growth retardation, muscle weakness, and skeletal deformities.
  • Bone metabolism cannot improve.
  • Vitamin D helps your immune system function well. As a matter of fact, fighting against diseases may be insufficient in vitamin D deficiency.
  • It prepares the ground for obesity.
  • Sleep disturbances may occur.
  • It can prepare the ground for Alzheimer's disease.
  • It can lead to chronic fatigue at any time of the day.

What diseases does vitamin D deficiency cause?

In people with vitamin D deficiency; It can cause health problems such as cancer, chronic fatigue, diabetes, hypertension, depression, rheumatism and heart diseases. Vitamin D deficiency; It also negatively affects bone density and invites bone diseases.

  • Bone resorption and bone diseases

Bones have a lively structure just like other tissues, and long-term vitamin D deficiency can cause deterioration in bone structure, bone resorption and muscle weakness. Depending on vitamin D, rickets in children, bone softening in adults, and osteoporosis can occur in later ages. Rickets refers to the softening and weakening of the bones due to vitamin D deficiency. This disease may cause permanent defects in the bone structure such as curvature of the legs, thickening of the hands and ankles, growth retardation, and breast bone deformity.

In vitamin D deficiency, bone pain can be seen with bone resorption and this can be felt in the whole body. Later, weakness may accompany these pains. Foods containing omega-3, calcium, magnesium, potassium and vitamin D should be consumed to strengthen bones. In order to prevent osteoporosis that manifests itself in later ages, it is necessary to eat a healthy diet and maintain the vitamin D level together with other vitamins. Breast milk consumption in infancy is of great importance in order to avoid bone problems in later years.

  • Diabetes and heart disease

Problems such as diabetes, stroke, heart-related death risk, high blood pressure are also among the health problems that can be caused by vitamin D deficiency.

  • Cancer

Vitamin D deficiency can trigger cancer formation. Breast cancer in particular is thought to be linked to vitamin D deficiency. Women who have breast cancer and have a high vitamin D value have a longer life expectancy than those with a lower value. Increasing the vitamin D level of people with breast cancer to 50 ng / ml and above affects the treatment positively.

Since vitamin D increases communication between cells, it prevents them from dividing rapidly. By preventing the abnormal proliferation of cells, it accelerates the blood flow and slows down the feeding of cancer cells. Since the harmful cells cannot be fed, they disappear after a while.

The vitamin D levels of women living indoors are around 17 ng / ml. In women without cancer, the vitamin D level should be at least around 30 ng / ml. When the vitamin D level rises to 50 ng / ml and above, the risk of developing breast cancer decreases by 50%.

According to researches, vitamin D deficiency also increases the risk of lung, colon and prostate cancer besides breast cancer.

What are the harms of vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy?

Vitamin D deficiency also manifests itself in gynecological diseases and birth. Vitamin D use is extremely important for maternal and child health during pregnancy. Since the baby in the womb meets the need for calcium from the mother, the vitamin D level must be sufficient to maintain the calcium balance of the mother during pregnancy and breastfeeding. The bones of babies of mothers with vitamin D deficiency may soften and weaken. Weakness of the baby's muscles, closing or not closing the fontanelle, weakness in teething are also associated with vitamin D deficiency. Deficient vitamin D intake during pregnancy can cause permanent damage in newborn babies and cannot be completely corrected by vitamin supplements after birth.
In vitamin D deficiency, there may be an increase in the risk of preeclampsia / eclampsia called pregnancy poisoning in expectant mothers. Fatigue, insufficient weight gain, fatigue, muscle and bone pain during pregnancy are also related to vitamin D. Also, gestational diabetes and osteoporosis In vitamin D deficiency are among the situations that may occur. Cesarean delivery is more common in mothers with low vitamin D levels. Vitamin D supplementation should be started from the 12th week for expectant mothers and continued until the 6th month of the breastfeeding period.

People at risk of diseases seen in vitamin D deficiency:

  • Light skinned
  • The elderly
  • Diabetes patients
  • Those who work indoors and wear closed
  • Those who use high factor sunscreen
  • Those with kidney and liver diseases
  • Those with malnutrition
  • Those who have stomach surgery
  • During pregnancy and lactation
  • People using epilepsy medication
  • Cortisone users
  • Those with celiac disease

How many should vitamin D be?

* Extremely Low Vitamin D Level: below 30 nmol / L (12 ng / mL)
* Slightly Low Vitamin D Level: between 30 nmol / L (12 ng / mL) and 50 nmol / L (20 ng / mL)
* Normal Vitamin D Level: between 50 nmol / L (20 ng / mL) to 125 nmol / L (50 ng / mL)
* High Vitamin D Level: higher than 125 nmol / L (50 ng / mL)

What is the daily vitamin D requirement?

The need for vitamin D varies according to age and person. While 1 IU is sufficient for babies up to 400 year old, 1 IU should be taken after 600 year of age. After the age of 70, the daily need for vitamin D increases. Low vitamin D levels can lead to a range of problems, particularly those related to bones and muscles.

What are the benefits of vitamin D?

  • Protects muscles and bones

Vitamin D is the vitamin that balances the blood levels of phosphorus and calcium substances. It is extremely important for dental and bone health. While it ensures the absorption of calcium in the intestines, it also reduces calcium loss in the kidneys. The hardening of bones with calcium accumulation occurs with vitamin D. Since it increases muscle strength and muscle mass, it reduces falls, especially in the elderly. It prevents the secretion of parathyroid hormone that causes bone resorption. For muscle and bone health, it is extremely important to pay attention to vitamin intake and diet.

  • Protects against diabetes

Vitamin D has the ability to protect against diabetes. It is seen that Type 1 diabetes decreases in children who have enough vitamin D, and Type 2 diabetes increases in those with low levels. In addition, conditions such as metabolic syndrome occur in people with vitamin D deficiency.

  • Protects the immune system

Vitamin D is among the vitamins that strengthen the immune system. Providing protection against diseases by strengthening immunity, vitamin D is beneficial for all cells in the body. Low vitamin D is found in diseases caused by the immune system such as ulcerative colitis, Crohn's, Multiple Sclerosis (MS). It is seen that these diseases can be prevented with sufficient vitamin D.

  • Protects heart health

Vitamin D is good for heart health and diseases. It has a protective effect against diseases related to high blood pressure, heart diseases and some types of cancer.

What is vitamin D found in?

The most important source of vitamin D that the body needs is sunlight. In other words, the sun, which causes many skin diseases, has health benefits as well as health benefits. 95% of the vitamin D required for the body is provided by ultraviolet rays in the sun, and the rest is provided by food. For this, the skin must be exposed to direct sunlight. Sun exposure over clothes or behind windows is not effective in eliminating vitamin D deficiency. Likewise, sunscreens of a factor of 20 or more used while sunbathing also prevent the production of vitamin D in the skin. Since indoor environments cause vitamin D deficiency, it is more important to go outdoors. The reason why vitamin D deficiency is seen at almost every age is the inability to benefit from the sun sufficiently. Since prolonged exposure to the midday sun may have negative effects, especially on hot summer days, it will be good to go out in the morning and afternoon hours. Sunlight requirements may vary depending on the skin color, age and sunbathing style of the person. People with dark skin need sunlight for a longer time, especially in winter, in order for sufficient vitamin D to form on the skin.

What foods are vitamin D found in? 

In order not to experience vitamin D deficiency in months or regions where the sun is scarce, it is necessary to add foods containing vitamin D to the diet and diet. The following foods can be listed as an answer to the question of what vitamin D contains:

  • Fish varieties rich in fat (salmon, mackerel, tuna, sardines)
  • Milk and milk products
  • egg
  • Natural juices such as orange juice
  • Chicken livers
  • Fish oil
  • Grain products
  • Clover
  • Dead nettle
  • Parsley

Vitamin D supplement

Before taking vitamin D supplements (vitamin D drugs), a doctor should be consulted and an appropriate vitamin D deficiency treatment should be performed. The diagnosis of vitamin D deficiency is made by measuring the vitamin D level in the blood. Oral treatment is recommended for those who cannot meet their daily needs. Higher doses of vitamin D supplements can be administered by injection from the hip. According to researches, when vitamin D pill or vitamin D drops are taken with fatty meals, the absorption of the vitamin is higher.

What are the harms of high vitamin D levels?

Too much of everything is harmful to the body. The same is true for the amount of vitamin D, and too much can lead to poisoning.

The high level range for vitamin D stored in fat and not excreted in urine is 125 nmol / l or more. High vitamin D levels can lead to calcium deposits in organs and soft tissues. The haphazard use of vitamin D can result in high blood levels. The damages of using too much vitamin D can be listed as follows.

  • Tissue and joint calcifications
  • It can lead to kidney stone formation and kidney damage.
  • It can lead to hypertension
  • It can cause an increase in calcium in the blood.

On the other hand, excess vitamin D can lead to poisoning and kidney failure and heart failure that develop as a result of this poisoning can lead to death. Early toxicity (intoxication) symptoms can be seen as bone pain, dizziness, dry mouth, constipation, persistent headache, thirst, myalgia, anorexia, nausea, vomiting, and irregular heartbeat. Symptoms of chronic toxicity may manifest themselves with skin itching, nausea, sexual reluctance, severe stomach pain, psychiatric problems, bone pain, cloudiness in urine, eyes sensitive to light, vomiting.

Note: Since sunlight destroys the excess vitamin D, vitamin D poisoning does not occur with sunbathing.

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