Did you know four out of ten people in the U.S. have a Vitamin D deficiency? Not to mention it is surprisingly an overlooked deficiency. Chances are you don’t feel your best if you’re a part of that group. Usually, a trip to your physician and blood work will be able to tell you if you’re deficient. And if you’re deficient, don’t stress because a Vitamin D deficiency is an easy fix.
First, what exactly is Vitamin D, and what does it do for our bodies? Vitamin D is one of our body’s best friends because it has multiple health benefits. It absorbs calcium to maintain bone health and strengthen our bones. Vitamin D supports a healthy brain, heart, teeth, and lungs. It keeps our immune system strong and regulates our insulin levels. Lastly, it can increase our energy levels and enhance our moods.
Since sunlight is one of the best ways to get Vitamin D naturally, people who spend most of their time indoors are at risk for low Vitamin D levels. People with darker skin are also at risk for low levels. Another factor of Vitamin D deficiency is certain medical situations. Individuals with GI tract diseases, chronic kidney and liver disease, celiac disease, and people who have had bariatric surgery.
Symptoms Of Vitamin D Deficiency
Unfortunately, symptoms can be subtle, and most people aren’t aware they’re deficient. Symptoms of Vitamin D deficiency include:
- Fatigue or tiredness
- Bone pain
- Joint pain
- Muscle pain
- Sour mood
- Low energy
- More frequent illness
- Weight gain
- Hair loss
Ways to Improve Deficiency
Per doctors, adding an over-the-counter vitamin D supplement can make improvements in just three to four months. Vitamin D with a strength of 1000-2000 international units daily is the recommended dose for most adults.
Besides standing in the sun for 10 – 15 minutes per day, eating foods rich in Vitamin D or taking supplements are other ways to improve your Vitamin D level. Some Vitamin D-rich foods include:
- Fatty fish like salmon, tuna, herring, or sardines
- Egg yolks
- Beef liver
- Cod liver oil
Hopefully, these simple steps of adding more of a particular food or supplement to your diet will help you.