What is Vitamin D?
Vitamin D is one of the most important nutrients needed to keep your body’s bones and teeth strong and healthy, but many individuals do not consume the correct daily dose in their diets. An important part of ensuring that your body has enough synthesized vitamin D is having frequent exposure to natural sunlight. Because exposure to ultraviolet rays is linked to skin cancer, many individuals avoid spending too much time in the sun or wear sunscreen that blocks the ultraviolet rays that synthesize vitamin D. A few dietary sources of vitamin D include:
- Eggs – yolks
- Fish – sardines, tuna, mackerel and salmon
- Fish oil – from codfish
- Fortified foods – milk, cereal and other boxed or canned food
- There are also tablet, capsule and liquid dietary supplements that contain vitamin D.
Vitamin D Acts more like a Hormone than a Vitamin
Scientists are learning more about the importance of vitamin D, and in many ways, it acts more like a hormone in the body rather than a vitamin. Your body manufactures numerous types of hormones to regulate organ functions along with immunity levels, and when hormone production stops or becomes abnormal, you begin to suffer from a variety of health problems such as fatigue, sexual dysfunction or pain. Activated vitamin D is manufactured in your liver and kidneys after you ingest certain foods or are exposed to sunlight, but in many cases, people have health conditions that prevent this process from occurring. Only recently has vitamin D been discovered to have a wide array of positive health and immune modulating activities.
Schedule Your Free Consultation
The Epidemic of Vitamin D Deficiency
There is an epidemic of vitamin D deficiency in many developed countries because most people do not have enough sunlight exposure or are not consuming the correct foods. Today, the majority of people work inside buildings during the day and travel in covered vehicles. When someone does go outside, they protect their skin with sunlight-blocking creams and lotions or wear protective clothing to prevent sunburns, freckling and skin cancer. In addition, many individuals are unable to eat the foods that contain vitamin D because they have food allergies or sensitivities.
Symptoms of Vitamin D Deficiency
There are several symptoms that indicate that someone has a vitamin D deficiency, including:
- Bone fractures – increased risk of bone fracture in the elderly population
- Erectile dysfunction – in the male population
- Discomfort in the body – overall aches and pains
- Fatigue – chronic tiredness
- Dizziness – brain fog or light-headedness
- Muscle twitching – especially in the legs and arms
- Osteoporosis – loss of bone tissue
- Osteomalacia – muscle weakness combined with bone thinning
- Rickets – abnormalities of the long bones and skull during childhood
- Mental disorders – depression or schizophrenia
- Pregnancy complications – preeclampsia
When you suspect that you have low vitamin D levels, you can request a blood test from a physician or medical clinic. The 25-hydroxy vitamin D test can determine if you do have low vitamin D levels in order to devise a plan of action to take medications or dietary supplements to improve the manufacture of this nutrient in your kidneys and liver.
What are the Benefits of Optimal Vitamin D Levels?
There are several benefits from having optimal vitamin D levels such as:
- Having more energy
- Avoiding pregnancy complications
- Sexual wellness
- Improved brain functions
- Less muscle pain
- Stronger teeth
- Improved immune system
- Preventing multiple sclerosis
- Regulating absorption of phosphorous
- Preventing diabetes mellitus
- Regulating absorption of calcium
- Protection from several types of cancer
- Improving bone density and strength
- Avoiding broken bones
The Important Balance between Vitamin D and Vitamin K2
New studies reveal that it is vital to have a dietary balance between vitamin K2 and vitamin D to ensure both nutrients work optimally in your body. Vitamin K2 is responsible for helping the calcium in foods to travel to the correct locations in bone tissue rather than traveling to soft tissue such as organs or skin. A few foods that contain vitamin K2 include:
- Hard and soft cheeses
- Liver from geese, chicken and cattle
- Egg yolks
- Milk, kefir and butter
- Natto or fermented soybeans
The vitamin K2 in these foods and beverages combines with dietary fats and is absorbed by your small intestine before it enters the body’s bloodstream. In some countries, vitamin K2 is prescribed along with vitamin D to help prevent osteoporosis. This condition tends to affect the elderly population, leading to poor bone density. Individuals with osteoporosis are at a higher risk for developing dowager’s hump or breaking their hip bones.
Contact LifeBoost to Schedule an Assessment of Your Vitamin D Levels.
LifeBoost located in Boca Raton, FL offers customized PRP therapy, hormone replacement and nutritional supplement services from Dr. Bruce J. Stratt. Take the first step toward restoring your vitamin D levels today by making a telephone call to 561-922-9967 to schedule an appointment or to learn more about correcting your vitamin D deficiency.