Alternative MethodsConventional Methods


March 29

Scientists Have Calculated The Exact Dose of Vitamin D You Should Take to Avoid Health Problems

Samuel Carlson
Core Spirit member since Dec 24, 2020
Reading time 7 min.

Did you know that one BILLION people worldwide are deficient in Vitamin D?

Closer to home in America, at least 50% of children under 12 years of age are either insufficient or deficient in this essential nutrient.

You could almost say that we have a pandemic of Vitamin D deficiency!

As we currently approach the darker months in the Northern Hemisphere, now is the perfect time to be aware of the signs, symptoms and risk factors for this common deficiency.

What is Vitamin D?

Vitamin D is one of the most complex and fascinating vitamins that our body needs. The ways that our body gets Vitamin D and subsequently metabolizes this substance are truly unique.

Aptly called the Sunshine Vitamin, sunlight initially triggers our body to produce Vitamin D in the skin. Thereafter, Vitamin D undergoes complicated metabolic processes in the kidneys and liver to turn into its active form (Vitamin D3, also called cholecalciferol).

Once in its activated state, cholecalciferol doesn’t merely behave as a vitamin. In fact, it doubles as a steroid hormone, performing many functions throughout your body.

What Foods Contain Vitamin D?

Vitamin D is found predominantly in animal-based products, including:

  • Oily fish, such as mackerel, tuna and salmon (a 6 oz serving of salmon provides more than 600 IU of Vitamin D),

  • Egg yolk,

  • Cheese,

  • Beef liver,

  • Fish oil supplementation.

However, smaller amounts of Vitamin D can also be found in fortified grain products and UV-radiated mushrooms.

Why Is Vitamin D Important?

Vitamin D is probably most famous for its role in building strong bones. This important vitamin helps to regulate calcium and phosphorus in the blood; two essential minerals needed for maintaining a healthy bone mass.

In a severe scenario, lack of Vitamin D can cause a disease called rickets. This is a devastating disorder whereby the bone tissue fails to fully mineralize, leading to soft, bendy bones and abnormalities in the skeletal structure.

Most people in the Western world won’t develop a deficiency that is extreme enough to cause rickets, however, suboptimal Vitamin D levels can still affect our bone formation to a lesser degree.

Aside from the vital bone-building power of Vitamin D, recent research shows us that it also assists with a vast range of other functions within the human body, spanning cell growth, immunity, neuromuscular activities and reduced inflammation.

In a broad sense, chronic Vitamin D deficiency can increase your risk of numerous diseases, including:

  • Heart disease,

  • Some cancers (particularly bowel),

  • Asthma (in children),

  • Cognitive impairment (in elderly people),

  • Mental health issues (including depression and schizophrenia).

  • On the positive side, getting plenty of Vitamin D can help to prevent:

  • Glucose intolerance,

  • Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes,

  • High blood pressure,

  • (Possibly) Multiple Sclerosis,

  • Hip fracture and broken bones

  • Osteopenia and osteoporosis

As you can see, Vitamin D calls the shots for your health in many respects. To optimize your health and make sure you’re getting plenty, here are 13 signs, symptoms and risk factors for Vitamin D deficiency:

1 It’s Winter And You Live In The Northern Latitudes

Many countries in the Northern hemisphere experience long periods of darkness during the winter months. This extended time deprived of sunlight can be enough to cause Vitamin D deficiency in some of us.

If you do live within such areas, it may be helpful to get your Vitamin D levels tested at the start and end of winter, so you can supplement accordingly, if needed.

#2 Achy Bones

Most of us would relate to that feeling of bone-deep weariness that follows a few days of heightened physical exertion, such as moving house or participating in a sporting competition.

However, if you feel achy in your joints and bones persistently, this can sometimes indicate a Vitamin D deficiency.

3 You Have A Gastrointestinal Disease Or Issues With Absorption

Dietary Vitamin D has one gateway into your body; the gut.

Therefore, if your gut is inflamed, diseased or absorbing food inefficiently, this can compromise your Vitamin D status.

For anybody with Crohn’s disease, celiac disease or other inflammatory bowel disorders, it can be a good idea to routinely monitor your Vitamin D levels.

4 Muscle Malaise

Notice that your reps have dropped a little in the gym or you’re not feeling as strong as usual for no apparent reason? It may be time to check your Vitamin D levels!

A subtle muscle malaise can be one of the many symptoms of Vitamin D deficiency. Given that Vitamin D is a hormone, it has receptors widely spread throughout the body - including your muscles.

In its metabolically active state, Vitamin D can enter muscle cells to support contraction of your muscle fibers. Aside from supporting muscle function, this aids in the prevention of falls as we age and helps us to carry out everyday physical activities.

5 You’ve Got The Blues

When we visually perceive sunlight, receptors in our eyes trigger the brains to produce serotonin, which is often called the ‘happiness hormone’.

Serotonin levels increase when we see natural sunlight but drop off if we are spending our time indoors or in the dark.

A 2006 study highlighted that elderly patients with low Vitamin D were a whopping 11 times more likely to have depression than their peers who had acceptable levels.

6 Following A Strictly Vegan Diet

As mentioned, most of our dietary sources of Vitamin D come from animal-based sources. Smaller amounts come from select vegan foods, but not at a high enough dose to be clinically significant.

If you’re currently following a vegan diet, it may be particularly helpful to monitor your Vitamin D levels and consider the non-food recommendations which are coming up soon!

7 You Get Every Cold And Flu

Science shows us that even immune cells contain Vitamin D receptors, demonstrating that Vitamin D exerts some level of influence over our immunity.

One study found that Vitamin D3 supplementation of children during the winter months decreased the outbreaks of flu.

So if you’re getting sniffly more often than you’d like, it could be due to lack of Vitamin D!

8 You Spend A Lot Of Time Indoors

As UV rays are the body’s primary source of Vitamin D, it stands to reason that anyone who doesn’t spend much time outside is at heightened risk of developing a deficiency.

People who are homebound due to mental or physical ailment, those of us who work in jobs that don’t allow natural sun exposure or anyone experiencing a long period of convalescence is therefore, more likely to be Vitamin D deficient.

Dr. Mercola also points out that “while laying on a glass patio or soaking up rays through a window may feel good on your skin, the warmth that comes through is deceiving because vitamin D-producing UVB rays cannot pass through glass. So you’ll get absolutely no boost to your vitamin D levels if the sunlight passes through a window before hitting your skin.”

9 You Wear Long Robes And Head Coverings For Religious Reasons (Or Otherwise)

The skin must be directly exposed to sunlight in order to activate Vitamin D. Clothing, sunscreen and even glass will inhibit this natural process.

Furthermore, the hands, neck, face and shoulders are often recommended as zones to expose to the sun for short, brief periods to gain Vitamin D.

If you routinely wear clothing that covers your skin, it can be a wise idea to check your Vitamin D.

10 Your BMI Is Higher Than 30

As mentioned earlier, Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin. This makes Vitamin D more ‘compatible’ with the fat cells in your body and as Vitamin D circulates around your bloodstream, fat cells can uptake Vitamin D, making less available for the rest of your body where it is needed.

This has led some experts to believe that people with greater body weight may have higher Vitamin D requirements.

11 Your Skin Is Naturally Dark

A pigment called melanin is responsible for darkening the color of our skin. However, melanin also acts as a natural sunblock and impairs our skin’s production of Vitamin D with sunlight.

In fact, people with dark skin may need up to ten times more sun exposure to produce the same quantity of Vitamin D as people with fair skin. While this isn’t a recommendation for anybody with darker skin to sunbathe for ten times longer, it does highlight that there can be quite a big difference in terms of this endogenous production.

12 You’ve Had 70 Birthdays, Or More

People over the age of 70 are able to make about one third less Vitamin D than their younger counterparts after sitting in the sun.

Indeed, even after 50 years the kidneys can become less proficient at metabolizing inactive Vitamin D into its active state.

13 You Get The Forehead Sweats!

It sounds like an odd symptom but a sweaty forehead has often been used as a telltale sign that newborn babies aren’t getting enough Vitamin D.

However, this symptom still applies well into your adult years. So if you perspire frequently on your forehead without exertion, a hot environment or other explanatory factors, it could be time to check your Vitamin D!

Testing for Vitamin D Deficiency

According to WebMD, the most accurate way to measure how much vitamin D is in your body is the 25-hydroxy vitamin D blood test. A level of 20 nanograms/milliliter to 50 ng/mL is considered adequate for healthy people. A level less than 12 ng/mL indicates vitamin D deficiency.

How Much Vitamin D Do You Need Daily?

  • Age 1-70: 600 IU (international units)

  • Age 71 and older: 800 IU

Your doctor may recommend higher levels of vitamin D, especially if you aren’t getting enough of them or are at risk for osteoporosis.

What To Do If You’re Vitamin D Deficient

If you’re deficient in Vitamin D, include more Vitamin D food sources in your diet from the food list above, and seek out some sunshine! A good quality supplement may also be required.

Comments

Leave your questions here

To write a comment you must
or
Services
Category filter
Concern filter
Type filter
Sort
 
All categories
Oracle Cards Reading
$22 USD
Clarity Session

Hello from Eclectic Healing & Wellness. Thank you for this oppitunity to connect with you. This private clarity sessoon we will take a deep dive to discov…

Tyisha Morris
United States of America flag icon
Spiritual Healing
$270 USD
One-On-One Healing Session

I connect with your higher self/soul to channel the messages, blockages, guidance you need to hear for all life issues. From chronic pain, anxiety, depression,…

Dawn Cady
Australia flag icon
Wellness Coaching
$10 USD
Your Missing Manual for Health & Life!

Are you constantly reading books, blogs and listening to podcasts trying to figure out what to do to be healthy?

With so much conflicting information out ther…

Pamela Malo
United States of America flag icon
Positive Psychology
$10 USD
Initial Video Consult

Explore the fit and hear how I would address your therapeutic goal

Alex Guthrie, LMFT
United States of America flag icon
Spiritual Healing
$10 USD
HEALING / Life- Coaching Session

When you aren’t sure which way to turn or who to turn to for help in making decisions, I will help you come home to yourself and forge a plan to manifest your …

Dr. Michele S. Zirkle
United States of America flag icon
Life Coaching
$50 USD
Transformative Coaching Session

You will receive a private 1:1 transformative coaching session, focused on the area(s) in your life which you are most looking to improve, expand, and/or trans…

Tyisha Morris
United States of America flag icon
Tarot Reading
$10 USD
Tarot Reading - Checking in with the universe

“What does the universe want me to know?” is a common question. During uncertain times, it may be difficult to identify a single topic to focus upon. During th…

Jessica Karels
United States of America flag icon
Personal Development Coaching
$120 USD
Spiritual Life Coach Session-Personalized Session

Personalized Sessions

Because Everyone Is Unique

Sessions are based on the area of focus requested by the client.

Each session is a LIVE Session Goals will…

Deborah Lucero
United States of America flag icon
Chakra Balancing
$60 USD
Soul To Soul Reading Session

Energetic Reading

Complete Chakra System Reading to identify energy blocks. Techniques are provided to restore balance.

What Is An Energetic Reading?

Debo…

Deborah Lucero
United States of America flag icon
Channeling
$50 USD
Healing guidance session

You prepare your questions and I channel the root cause of the issue, as easy as that!

Every session looks different. We dive deep into the root and heal it f…

Nanna
5
Sweden flag icon
Spiritual Healing
$20 USD
Compassionate energy healing

For those times when we feel we need the energetic space to let our whole being restore itself. The healing is meant to give you a sense of safety and feel lik…

Nanna
Sweden flag icon
Distance Healing
$10 USD
Reiki and Energy Healing (Distant)

Reiki and energy healing is done by distance while a client is resting and the practitioner sends healing energy to the client. Clients have found that the en…

Beverly Lynn
Canada flag icon
Spiritual Healing
$80 USD
Soul Healing and Spiritual Advice

If you need a change in your life, if you are stuck and really want to move forward, if you see unwanted repeated patterns of life events or people’s behaviour…

Yavenirie - Spiritual Witchery Practice and…
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland flag icon
Spiritual Healing
$10 USD
Initial consultation for Spiritual Advice or Soul Healing Journey

You can book an initial spiritual consultation with me to touch base on your struggles and ways we can work together. The session will be online for around 15 …

Yavenirie - Spiritual Witchery Practice and…
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland flag icon
Shamanic Healing
$10 USD
Light the Path to Your Desired Life

If you want find what is that in life that makes you happy and fulfilled you need to heal all levels of your existence- Body, Mind, and Spirit. We are all ener…

Change Naturopathy
New Zealand flag icon
Emotional Freedom Technique
$10 USD
The Power Of Emotional Healing - EFT Program

“The Power of Emotional Healing” is energy psychology education in the Emotional Freedom Technique with the perfect balance of information, instructions, video…

Dawn Cady
Australia flag icon
Art Therapy
$50 USD
Artist Teacher Workshop Or Tutoring

“Life Force” guiding our history, our body and spirits. Self portrait art, life drawing from the live model, gesture, and plein air painting. And extended cont…

Bryan Prillwitz
United States of America flag icon
Tarot Reading
$100 USD
Timeline Reading

EGYPTIAN TAROT READINGS using unique methods developed by Nelise Carbonare, a Brazilian healer with more than 40 years of experience in tarot consultations, as…

Nelise Carbonare
United States of America flag icon
Tarot Reading
$120 USD
THE SYNERGY OF THE PYRAMID

THE SYNERGY OF THE PYRAMID focuses on a specific relationship: One side for the consultant and one for their partner. (the partner does not need to be present …

Nelise Carbonare
United States of America flag icon
Tarot Reading
$10 USD
Pick one card

Many questions can be answer with just one Arcane.

Do you want to try?

Nelise Carbonare
United States of America flag icon
Personal Development Coaching
$50 USD
Spiritual Coaching - Removing Energy Blocks - Expansion

> “Who looks outside dreams. Who looks inside awakens.” Jung

Spiritual coaching is about moving you into a profound state of empowerment and involution m…

Kimla Rose (Kim Desrosiers)
United States of America flag icon
Life Coaching
$10 USD
Life Purpose and Soul Wisdom

What is your deeper truth, your deeper knowing, your MOJO, your deepest desires, those feelings that you can’t explain but that are so pure and so clear…or may…

Anna Beale
United States of America flag icon
Nutritional Therapy
$150 USD
Nutritional Therapy Consultation

Hi my name is Aria and I am the founder of Heal with Nutrition. I am a registered Nutritional Therapist and a Naturopath who has a passion on Nutrition and Hea…

Aria Alexandrou
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland flag icon
Tarot Reading
$10 USD
THOTH AND HERMETIC DECKS READING

With a deep knowledge of hermeticism and being introduced to the kabbalah tradition of the emanation process from the tree of life, I provide a deep insight co…

James Marchiori
Ireland flag icon

Related Articles