Quick Facts about Vitamin D –Part 3

Now, as we all know that Vitamin D can be synthesized by the skin when exposed to the sun, we’ll talk a bit about that aspect. A burning problem is the haphazard use of the sunscreen all the time.

A sunscreen with SPF (sun protection factor) 30 when applied can substantially reduce the body’s ability to synthesize the vitamin by 95%. For the optimum amount of absorption of Vitamin D, the skin has to be directly exposed to the sunlight, not covered by clothing. The tiniest of the things like even an angle at which sunrays hit the earth can affect absorption of Vitamin D.

Vitamin D supplements are widely available, but such supplements can be consumed only under the medical supervision. It is best to obtain any vitamin through natural sources first like sunlight and food sources.

It is not a sole vitamin that make food an important part of our diet, but the combination of that foods that contains all the required nutrients working together and allowing for greater absorption matters the most.

To state an example for the same, Vitamin D is a fat soluble Vitamin which clearly requires dietary fat for its absorption. Plus, magnesium is required to convert Vitamin d in its active form.

It has been proved through research over a period of time that separating certain nutrients in the form of supplements won’t provide the same health advantages as the benefits obtained by consuming the nutrient from a whole food.

So, one should focus on acquiring the Vitamin D from the sunlight and dietary sources. Medical supplements providing the goodness of vitamin D are secondary and that too under the medical supervision.

Appropriate levels of vitamin D in the blood were found to protect the health.

Researchers from Boston University School of Medicine observed that appropriate Vitamin D levels in individuals have a noteworthy influence on the genes that are involved in several biological pathways associated with illnesses, including cancer, autoimmune disease, cardiovascular disease and infectious diseases.

The relationship of Vitamin D and weight loss: A significant finding was observed by the researchers at The University of Minnesota. They found that appropriate levels of Vitamin D in the body predict a significant loss in weight, suggesting a promising role in the concerned field.

Possible health benefits of vitamin D:

The potential health benefits of Vitamin D range from assisting the maintenance of a good bone health to the rising hope of possibility of Cancer prevention.

Vitamin D for healthy bones:

Vitamin D plays a significant role in the regulation of calcium levels and maintenance of phosphorus levels in the blood. The stated two factors are extremely important for maintaining healthy bones.

We need vitamin D to absorb calcium in the intestines and to reclaim calcium that would otherwise be excreted through the kidneys.

Vitamin D deficiency in children can lead to cause rickets, where the bones become extreme fragile and soft, characterized by a severely bow-legged appearance.

In adults, vitamin D deficiency manifests as osteomalacia or osteoporosis. Osteomalacia results in poor bone density, muscular weakness and often leads to fractures of the skeletal system. Osteoporosis is the most common bone disease among post-menopausal women and older men.

Reduced risk of flu:  

Children given 1,200 IU of vitamin D per day for 4 months under a strict medical supervision during the winter season reduced their risk of contracting influenza A infection by over 40%.

Reduced risk of diabetes:

Several observational studies have exhibited an inverse relationship between blood concentrations of vitamin D in the body and risk of type 2 diabetes. That means, less amount of Vitamin D levels in the blood, higher are the chances of contracting Diabetes.

In type 2 diabetics, insufficient vitamin D levels may have an adverse effect on insulin secretion and glucose tolerance.

In one particular study, infants who received 2,000 IU/day of vitamin D under a strict medical supervision had an 88% reduced risk of developing type 1 diabetes by the age of 32.

Healthy infants:

Lower levels of vitamin D have also been associated with a higher risk and severity of atopic childhood diseases and allergic diseases. including asthma.atopic dermatitis and eczema.

 

Healthy pregnancy:

Pregnant women who are deficient in vitamin D seem to be at greater risk, needing a caesarean section. Poor vitamin D status is also associated with gestational diabetes mellitus and bacterial vaginosis in pregnant women.

 

Cancer prevention:

Vitamin D is extremely significant for regulating cell growth and for cell-to-cell communication. Some studies have suggested that calcitriol (the hormonally active form of vitamin D) can reduce cancer progression by slowing the growth and development of new blood vessels in cancerous tissue, increasing cancer cell death and by reducing cell proliferation.

Vitamin D has an influence on more than 200 human genes, which can be impaired when D status is not sufficient.

Vitamin D deficiency has also been associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, hypertension, multiple sclerosis, autism, Alzheimer’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma severity and swine flu, however more reliable studies are needed before these associations can be proven.

 

 

 

 

 

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