Sources to Prevent Vitamin D Deficiency

Vitamin D deficiency can cause serious medical problems. Exposure to sunlight is an important source of vitamin D. Including foods with vitamin D in your diet is essential to ensure you are getting adequate amounts of vitamin D.

Vitamin D, also called calciferol, is a vitamin that dissolves in the body's fat. It is an essential vitamin that our body needs. Having adequate levels of vitamin D is very important to achieve good health. Vitamin D supports calcium and phosphorus deposition for building strong bones. Vitamin D deficiency can cause serious medical problems. In children, a vitamin D deficiency can cause rickets, which make their bones soft and unable to support their weight. In adults, it is essential to have healthy bones to prevent osteoporosis and broken hips. Being vitamin D deficient may take a toll on your heart and blood vessels. Vitamin D deficiency can double your risk of a stroke.

Several forms of vitamin D exist, each with a different activity. The two major forms are vitamin D2 or ergocalciferol, and vitamin D3 or cholecalciferol. Some forms are relatively inactive in the body, and have limited ability to function as a vitamin. The liver and kidney help convert vitamin D to its active hormone form.

Vitamin D Sources: Exposure to sunlight

Exposure to sunlight is an important source of vitamin D. Vitamin D can be produced by the body through the exposure to direct sunlight. Our bodies can manufacture enough vitamin D when given regular exposure to sunlight. Dark skinned people may need several times the amount to derive the same amount of vitamin D from sunlight exposure. People having very dark colored skin and elderly people have less capacity to produce vitamin D. Exposure to sunlight help to prevent vitamin D deficiency. Everyone should have some exposure to the sun to help the body produce vitamin D. In adults, vitamin D deficiency can lead to malformed bones and osteoporosis. As adults produce less vitamin D, even when they are exposed to sunlight, they have to monitor their diets to make sure they are taking in enough vitamin D.

Food Sources of Vitamin D

Although sunlight exposure can stimulate your body to produce vitamin D, including foods with vitamin D in your diet is essential to ensure you are getting adequate amounts of vitamin D. By switching to vitamin D fortified dairy products and breakfast cereals you use on a daily basis, you can help to reduce the risk of becoming vitamin D deficient.

Vitamin D is contained in a limited number of foods, either naturally or added. Natural food sources of vitamin D include: fish oils, herring, canned tuna and sardines ,mackerel, salmon, sardines, tuna, Pure cod liver oil, halibut, catfish, cooked liver and beef, egg yolks, shrimp, oysters. Milk and dairy products are fortified with vitamin D. Fortified soy milk, fortified yogurts, fortified cereals, fortified rice milk, and, fortified almond milk are good sources of vitamin D. Vitamin D-fortified cheese and margarine will provide the required vitamin D. You can also get vitamin D from navy beans, tofu, oranges, almonds, seaweed, white beans, chickpeas, oats, and turnip. To prevent vitamin D deficiency, adults with inadequate sun exposure should have a vitamin D intake. You should try to eat the food mentioned in order to prevent Vitamin D deficiency symptoms.

Having sufficiently levels of vitamin D plays an important role in health and can prevent or treat several conditions. Sufficient amounts of Vitamin D, whether from exposure to sunlight or from food sources, greatly reduce the risks of developing conditions such as osteoporosis and joint damage. Vitamin D helps us keep up with the required level of calcium and phosphate in our body. Having sufficient levels of Vitamin D can prevent depression, muscle and bone weakness, certain types of cancer, and much more.

However, it must be noted that vitamin D can be harmful if taken in excess. It causes loss of appetite, nausea, and vomiting. It affects the kidney causing polyuria (excessive urine) or polydipsia (excessive thirst) or. Vitamin D overdose can cause kidney stones or even complete kidney failure (renal failure). Hence, it is very essential to maintain proper amount of vitamin D in our body.


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Abdel-moniem El-Shorbagy
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carol roach
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Posted on Mar 6, 2011