DavidPaul Doyle Naturwise is dedicated to educating the public on the dangers of nutritional deficiencies. We have supported many clients with their health issues over the past few years and continue to educate others on common deficiencies that can lead to disease. In this article, we will take a look at Vitamin D deficiency and how it can be a leading cause of illness in today’s society.
Vitamin D Deficiency
Vitamin D is responsible for many aspects of health. It regulates the immune system, reduces inflammation, keeps bones strong, supports brain function, and much more. Vitamin D in its active form is called calcitriol. This form of vitamin D must be converted in the kidneys when it enters the bloodstream. The further north you live from the equator (or if you live in a cloudy climate), the less chance you have of synthesizing this form of vitamin D from sun exposure. So even if you are receiving some sunshine, it may not be enough to maintain adequate levels of Vitamin D in your body.
VitaminDWiki says, “An October 2011 article published in Rheumatology International suggests that 25-hydroxyvitamin D deficiency may be a determinant of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). This study looked at serum levels of vitamin D metabolites in 437 RA patients and 340 controls, finding that 25-hydroxyvitamin D deficiency was more common among those with RA. Results also suggested that the lower the level of 25-hydroxyvitamin D, the more severe the disease. “
This study suggests that those with RA may not correctly regulate their immune systems because of a lack of vitamin D3. Vitamin D has been shown to reduce inflammation and also support a healthy immune system response. With this in mind, it would make sense that those who have difficulty maintaining adequate levels of vitamin D3 would be more susceptible to autoimmune disorders. Studies such as this help us understand how different aspects of our health are interrelated and dependent upon one another.”
A Vitamin D deficiency can contribute to a wide range of diseases, including:
- Autoimmune Disorders
- Heart Disease
- Type 2 Diabetes
What should I be looking for?
30 ng/mL is the minimum that should be considered adequate. Optimal levels are between 50-80 ng/ml. Levels below 30 ng/ml are considered deficient, and levels below 20 ng/ml put you at added risk of developing these disease states. Vitamin D testing is regarded as one of the most accurate compared to testing for other vitamins and minerals in the body.
What can I do about it?
The best way to combat a Vitamin D deficiency is to spend 10-15 minutes a day in the sun without sunscreen. To maintain healthy levels, this should become an everyday habit. Just make sure you are not wearing sunscreen, which will block the absorption of this vitamin.
In addition to sun exposure, you can take a Vitamin D supplement. Getting your levels checked is also recommended as only 1/3 of people who are deficient realize they have a problem. A simple prick of the finger is all it takes for this blood test.