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Facts about Vitamin D

Monday, 14 June 2010

Today i bring to you a post on vitamin D, one of the important vitamins needed for normal growth and development
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Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin.It has two forms: D2 and D3


How do we get Vitamin D in our body ?
Sources of vitamin D are dietary and non dietary. The non dietary sources form the greater supply of vitamin D


Non dietary sources of vitamin D:

Is by ultraviolet radiation of the skin and exposure of the bare skin to sunlight. The process is complex, it's done by the skin, kidneys and liver

Dietary sources of vitamin D:











Oil rich salt-water fish (eg; salmon), liver, egg yolk and D-fortified foods


So, what are the benefits of vitamin D ?
It is needed for healthy bones and teeth, fighting infections, prevents osteoporosis (a disease affecting bones that causes decreased bone density) and may reduce the risk of developing cancer
This video describes it in more details:


How much vitamin D should we have per day ?
The recommended daily intake of vitamin D is 400 IU

What are the dangers of vitamin D deficiency ?
Deficiency can occur in cases of non-exposure of bare skin to sunlight, which can lead to:
1. Rickets (in children)
2. Osteoporosis and osteomalacia (in adults)


Who is at risk of vitamin D deficiency ? am i at risk ?
 1. Breastfed infants: the mother's milk cannot supply the daily requirements of vitamin D. So they can be exposed to sunlight or better have vitamin D supplements

2. Old adults: due to ineffective synthesis of vitamin D due to defective liver and kidneys

3. People with limited sun exposure

4. People with dark skin: the dark skin reduced the ability of the skin to produce vitamin D from exposure to sunlight

5. People who are obese or having fat malabsorption or undergone gastric bypass surgery

What if we have an excess of vitamin D ? is it dangerous ?
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin which means that if present in excess, it will be stored in the fat component of our body. Unlike the water-soluble vitamins, which if present in excess, it will be excreted with urine and won't cause toxicity.
Toxicity of vitamin D will be in the form of nausea, vomiting, poor appetite, weakness. Besides it can cause heart rhythm abnormalities and formation of kidney stones due to increased calcium



Now it's time to focus on the latest updates involving vitamin D:
1. A recent study showed that women aged 70 or older who recieved a single annual dose of vitamin D had a higher rate of falls and fractures. Researchers say that the dosing regimen rather than the total annual dose might determine the outcome

2. Researchers found that there is a higher risk of rheumatoid arthritis in the northern latitudes. This might be related to the fact that there is less sunlight in these areas, which results in vitamin D deficiency. That's how rheumatoid arthritis can be linked to vitamin D deficiency


3. Researchers said that low levels of vitamin D is associated with more asthma symptoms and greater medication use

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