Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin, also referred to as (calciferol). In fact, actually it is a prohormone, which means that it is converted into a hormone by our body. Vitamin D is a group of fat-soluble compounds of which two are more important and are termed as:
- Vitamin D2 and
- Vitamin D3
It is naturally present in some food, and added to few others. It is also available as a dietary supplement. It is also produced by our body when ultraviolet rays (UV rays) from sunlight strike the fat cells in our skin and activate Vitamin D synthesis. It is essential for our body for absorption of calcium and phosphate from our intestines to maintain good bone health. It is also needed for bone growth and bone remodeling. Apart from this it has many other important roles to play.
IMPORTANCE OF VITAMIN D –
- Absorption of calcium and phosphate from the intestines
- Maintaining good bone health
- Providing good immunity
- Helps in improving fertility
- Keeps teeth and gums healthy.
- Helps against skin disease called psoriasis
A lack of vitamin D has been associated with:
- Frequent infections (such as colds and flu)
- Constant fatigue and tiredness
- Bone, back, or muscle pain
- Severe asthma in children
- Poor dental health
- Skin wounds that take a long time to heal.
- Hair loss
- Low mood or depression
- Kidney diseases
- Cardiovascular disease, and an increased risk of a stroke or a heart attack.
- An impairment in memory and thinking skills in older adults
- Cancer (particularly colon cancer)
The recommended daily amount of vitamin D is 400 international units (IU) for children up to age 12 months, 600 IU for ages 1 to 70 years, and 800 IU for people over 70 years.
SOURCES AND ABSORPTION –
Vitamin D is constituted by vit D2 and vitamin D3.
Sources of Vitamin D2 –
- It is obtained from plant sources – mushrooms that are exposed to sunlight are a good source of Vit D2.
- It is the less potent form of Vit D and hence a lot of it is needed to maintain good levels of vitamin D in the blood.
Sources of Vitamin D3 –
- The major natural source of Vitamin D3 is sunlight.
- When the body is exposed to sunlight, the cholesterol in the skin absorbs UV rays from the sun and converts it into Vitamin D3.
- UVB rays are a better source of Vitamin D3
- It is the more potent form of vitamin D and as little as 10 mins in the noon sun during the summer days can suffice one’s daily dose of Vitamin D.
- UVB rays are stronger during 10am to 3pm.
- Other sources of vitamin D3 include animal products – fatty fish – tuna, salmon, sardines, egg yolk, beef liver etc.
VITAMIN D TOXICITY
Vitamin D toxicity is rare, but it can happen if you take too many supplements. You cannot get vitamin D toxicity from the sun or by eating foods that contain vitamin D. As vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin, it may take several weeks for levels to come down, even after you stop taking supplements.
- Vitamin D levels are linked with calcium absorption, so early symptoms of vitamin D toxicity are caused by too much calcium in the blood. They include – nausea, vomiting, constipation, diarrhoea, weakness or frequent urination.
- If levels are left too high for too long, bone pain, headaches, drowsiness, itching and calcium stones in the kidneys may occur.
Vitamin D toxicity can be treated by stopping vitamin D supplements and restricting dietary calcium
HOMOEOPATHY IN THE SUPPLEMENTATION OF VITAMIN D
Homoeopathy is a holistic method of treatment. This means that the treatment plan is focused on the patient as a whole and not divided according to the complaints faced in different parts of the body. This holistic method of treatment urges the body to absorb the available nutritional supply to the optimum extent, be it from the gut or from the skin. This is then utilized to perform various functions in the body.
In individuals who are deficient in Vitamin D, supplements are required, but when along with that homoeopathic medicines are taken the deficiency is overcome sooner and the body retains it for a longer period of time and prevent the deficiency from re appearing.
In conditions arising from vitamin D deficiency such as weak bones, joint pains, low immunity etc homoeopathy offers individuals symptomatic relief as well as provides cure that is lasting and efficient. Choose homoeopathy for all your ailments and lead a happier and healthier life.
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