Vitamin D is the only vitamin produced by our body under the direct action of the sunlight but is also present in some foods. Its importance is major, especially in the assimilation of the calcium at the bones level. However, many people are just not having enough vitamin D in their body and the consequences caused by a deficient level of vitamin D are severe.
What are the possible causes of a Vitamin D deficiency?
In the first place, it is important to know that we obtain vitamin D naturally through sun exposure (although diet is also fundamental). Therefore, if you’re not exposing to the sunlight enough your body can’t produce enough vitamin D to cover its needs.
On the other hand, an unhealthy diet is also the culprit for a vitamin D deficiency. Even more, some medications can alter the production of vitamin D in the body or can interfere with the capacity of the liver and kidneys to metabolize vitamin D, thus, leading to vitamin D deficiency.
Although all people are exposed to vitamin D deficiency, some present a higher risk. Among these, there are newborns, elderly people, people with dark skin, people suffering from Crohn’s disease or celiac disease, overweight and obese people, those with kidney or liver disease, those suffering from hyperparathyroidism, and so on.
Consequences of a vitamin D deficiency
In children, the most serious disorder that can result from a vitamin D deficiency is rachitis. Rachitis is a disease that reduces the levels of calcium and phosphorus to such an extent that it demineralizes the bones and cartilages, causing skeletal deformation.
Symptoms such as constant pain in arms, legs, spine, or pelvis and the appearance of bumps or deformities are symptoms of rachitis.
In addition, some scientific studies relate pathologies such as diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer, or autoimmune diseases with deficient levels of vitamin D.
How to ensure a correct level of vitamin D?
The first step to ensure an adequate level of this vitamin is to stop avoiding exposing to the sun. All the recent mediatic frenzy against sun exposure because of the harmful UV radiations caused many people to develop vitamin D deficiency.
On the other hand, the diet will also help improve the health of patients who are exposed to vitamin D deficiency, therefore, foods such as fish, milk, butter, egg yolks, tuna, sardines, cereals, and cheese should be consumed.