The Sun is our greatest source of vitamin D, a nutrient not only crucial to bones but also vital for skin and mental health.Children may be at a greater risk for rickets, a softening of the bones without enough sunlight and dietary D, and can also expose adults to a greater risk for osteoporosis and many cardio-metabolic disorders. Vitamin D deficiency can lead to hypertension and Type 2 diabetes.
Researches indicate that adults wearing sunscreen for long or those who stay indoors for long are also Vitamin D deficient. People with darker skin or increased skin pigmentation are also at risk, as are the elderly.A sunscreen with 30 SPF reduces the skin’s ability to make vitamin D by a whopping 97%.
It is really tough to obtain Vitamin D from food—so you need to be extra vigilant and keep an eye out for these clues that you may not be getting enough Vitamin D
Bones always achy:
Vitamin D deficient adults feel more achiness in bones and muscles, especially in the winters. Also, their joints are a little stiffer when they get up in the morning.
That old ‘Blue’ feeling:
Serotonin, the brain hormone associated with mood elevation, falls with decreased sun exposure and rises with exposure to bright light. In a small 1998 study, healthy people given Vitamin D supplements during the winter reported greater positive feelings than people not given Vitamin D.
50 or above:
As you get older your skin doesn’t make as much Vitamin D in response to sun exposure. The kidneys start to grow a little less productive when it comes to converting Vitamin D into the form the body puts to good use.
There’s no change in Vitamin D production in obese people, but the higher concentration of body fat affects the levels of vitamin D in the blood. Vitamin D being fat soluble, means the more body fat you have, the more it gets “diluted. The obese and overweight need more daily Vitamin D to compensate for this effect.
The darker the complexion, greater is the risk of Vitamin D deficiency. Compared to someone with very pale complexion, a person with a darker skin needs 10 times the amount of sun exposure to make the same amount of Vitamin D. A sunscreen with 30 SPF reduces your skin’s ability to make Vitamin D by 97%, although sunscreen is highly recommended.
A sweaty head is usually one of the first signs of Vitamin D Deficiency. It is not uncommon for doctors to ask new mothers about how sweaty they found their heads.
You have Gut trouble:
If you have lower absorption of fat-soluble vitamins, then it is likely that you have a gastrointestinal condition that affects your ability to absorb Vitamin D as well, because Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin.
People with Crohn’s, celiac or inflammatory bowel disease may be a greater risk for vitamin D deficiency because of the way these gastrointestinal conditions affect fat absorption.
Now that you’ve understood the key factors which might indicate that you have a Vitamin D deficiency, make sure that you get your daily dose of “utilitarian sun exposure”. Make Sun your friend, not your enemy!