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What is Vitamin D?

Vitamin D or Calciferol is a fat soluble vitamin which means it is absorbed via fat absorption pathways. It is often called the sunshine vitamin because it’s the only vitamin that we can get from direct exposure to sunlight.

What does Vitamin D do?

Vitamin D plays a vital role in bone growth and strength by helping with calcium absorption. It is also important for muscle and movement, nerves, and plays an active role in protecting the body from bacteria and viruses.

Vitamin D deficiency leads to bone weakness such as rickets in children and osteomalacia and osteoporosis in adults. Muscle spasms is another sign of Vitamin D deficiency due to it’s role on muscle. At times, it can cause hair loss too.

What foods are high in Vitamin D?

Vitamin D is not present in many foods naturally but some foods are fortified by adding Vitamin D to them. Foods that contain Vitamin D are fatty fishes such as salmon and tuna, dairy products, and some breakfast cereals.

Sunlight exposure is another source of Vitamin D. The body makes Vitamin D when exposed to sunlight. Sunlight is important for Vitamin D but it is also necessary to be careful when it comes to being in the sun because of the risks it poses which can include developing skin cancer.

Am I getting enough Vitamin D?

Some Americans are Vitamin D deficient because of decreased sun exposure and limited amounts found in foods. If you suspect that you may not be getting enough Vitamin D or have symptoms of deficiency then definitely talk to your doctor about your concerns.

If you have any questions – feel free to shoot us a message. For more information, check out the National Institute of Health’s Vitamin D Fact Sheet.

 

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