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Vitamin D health benefits

Vitamin D is essential for optimal health. It is very important vital vitamin responsible for several promoting health functions largely by promoting the absorption of calcium and phosphorus. Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin and it is stored in the body. Vitamin D health benefits cannot be underestimated. Vitamin D is important not only for normal growth and development of bones and teeth but also for improved resistance against certain diseases. This vitamin is very important for healthy bones, muscles, heart and strong immune system. Vitamin D anticancer properties can prevent several types of cancer, diabetes and depression. According to scientists, vitamin D can affect as many as 2000 genes in human body.

Main source of vitamin D is sun exposure. Few foods contain vitamin D naturally and this is why some foods are fortified (milk, yogurt, breakfast cereal, margarine, orange juice). Natural vitamin D found in salmon, sardines, shrimps and egg yolk. It is not easy to get enough vitamin D each day through sun exposure mentioned foods alone, so taking vitamin D supplements can help.

According to recent research, vitamin D deficiency could lead to increased risks of bone diseases, heart diseases, type 1 diabetes, muscle and bone pain, few types of cancer such as breast cancer, colon cancer, ovarian cancer, prostate cancer, esophagus cancer and cancer of lymphatic system.

Activated vitamin D is one of the most potent inhibitors of cancer cell growth. It also stimulates your pancreas to make insulin. It regulates your immune system.”
Michael F. Holick, PhD, MD, Boston University School of Medicine.

Human body produces vitamin D naturally when it is directly exposed to sunlight. The most accurate way to measure how much vitamin D is in your body is blood test (measurement of 25-hydroxy vitamin D). Normal blood serum levels (adequate for healthy people) range from 20 ng/mL to 50 ng/mL. Depending on your blood level, additional vitamin D supplements can be prescribed.

Just five to ten minutes in the sun two to three times a week exposing your hands, legs and arms is more than adequate to satisfy your vitamin D requirements, and you’re not likely to significantly increase your risk of skin cancer in the process.
Michael F. Holick, PhD, MD, Boston University School of Medicine.

Vitamin D deficiency symptoms

Vitamin D health benefits

Vitamin D health benefits

  • General tiredness,
  • Unexpected aches and pains,
  • Severe bone or muscle pain,
  • Bad mood,
  • Physical weakness (difficulty climbing stairs or getting up from the floor),
  • Stress fractures (especially in legs, pelvis and hips).

Vitamin D health benefits – bones

Vitamin D is important for healthy bones. Vitamin D increases the absorption of calcium and phosphorus from food and these nutrients are important for bone health. Normal and higher levels of vitamin D may reduce the risk of fractures, limit bone loss and improve recovery from fractures.

Vitamin D health benefits – muscles

Vitamin D increases muscles strength. Scientists demonstrated links between vitamin D and muscle growth and strength. Adequate levels of vitamin D may also reduce the risk of falls and frailty in the elderly.

Vitamin D health benefits – heart health

It was noted that vitamin D may help improve heart health and reduce risks of heart attacks. The highest risks were seen in individuals with low vitamin D levels combined with high blood pressure. Although vitamin D deficiency is often linked to an increased risk of heart disease, many studies fail to find a decreased risk from taking vitamin D supplements.

Vitamin D health benefits – anticancer

Vitamin D can be considered as anticancer vitamin. Maintaining adequate vitamin D levels may have some benefits for preventing few types of cancer. Several studies suggest that women with higher levels of vitamin D have lower risks for certain types of cancer including breast cancer, ovarian cancer, bladder cancer and colorectal cancer. Some experts believe that vitamin D supplements can increase survival rate in cases of cancer.

Vitamin D health benefits – diabetes

According to health experts, vitamin D can reduce risks of diabetes. Vitamin D may protect against diabetes by reducing insulin resistance, increasing insulin sensitivity and enhancing the function of the cells responsible for producing insulin.
Studies show that infants and toddlers who received vitamin D supplements may have lower risk of developing diabetes than infants given no supplements.

Vitamin D health benefits – depression

Vitamin D might play an important role in regulating mood and preventing depression. According to researchers, vitamin D increases the amount of serotonin in the brain, which is a known contributor to feelings of well-being and happiness. Recent review reports show that low vitamin D levels may increase the likelihood of depression by up to 131%.
It was noted that vitamin D supplements are most effective at reducing symptoms in individuals with strong symptoms of depression, but less effective in those with moderate or light symptoms.

Vitamin D health benefits – reducing risks of premature death

Vitamin D may reduce risks of premature death. Several studies describes pretty remarkable consistent link between blood vitamin D levels and the risk of dying prematurely. Actually vitamin D could help you live longer life. Vitamin D level maintenance may reduce risks of dying prematurely.

Vitamin D health benefits – multiple sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis is complicated autoimmune disease that involves brain, spinal cord and optic nerves of the eyes. It was noted that vitamin D may help lower risks of multiple sclerosis and slow its progression.

Maintaining adequate levels of vitamin D whether through food, sun exposure or supplements is very important for optimal health.

Vitamin D health benefits – other benefits

According to recent studies, vitamin D health benefits could include also the following:

  • Reducing the likelihood of asthma attacks,
  • Preventing common cold and flu,
  • Reducing chronic pains,
  • Protecting from Parkinson’s disease,
  • Improving recovery after surgery,
  • Promoting healthy births,
  • Reducing aging mental decline,
  • Boosting weight loss.

 


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