If there is a drop in the level of vitamin D in a person’s body, it will reflect in his/her health. In this article, we will learn more about the low vitamin D side effects.
Vitamin D belongs to the list of most essential vitamins that are crucial for holistic growth of body and mind. With its help, the body is able to strengthen bones and teeth, as it helps in the absorption of calcium. People who’re suffering from vitamin D deficiency are advised to take calcium supplements and diets rich in calcium.
Side Effects of Deficiency
Low vitamin D levels in the body are linked to several side effects, most notably diabetes, erratic blood pressure, lung cancer, osteoporosis, arthritis, etc. The following paragraphs discuss these various side effects of low vitamin D levels in some detail.
- Weaker Bones:
Vitamin D directly affects the strength of bones, making them weak. This is due to the reason that it facilitates the absorption of two important minerals in the body, viz., calcium and phosphorus. Calcium and phosphorus, as we all know, are required by our body for maintaining bone health. Vitamin D deficiency invariably leads to poor absorption of calcium and phosphorus, and hence, the bones become weak. Its low levels lead to brittle bones, which increases the risk of bone fracture even due to minor injuries. In children, rickets is the most common disease that affects their health due to the deficiency of this vitamin. In adults, chronic diseases like osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, osteomalacia (softening of bones), and several other bone disorders can also be seen. Owing to these facts, women and men above 40 years of age are generally advised to look after their intake of this vitamin carefully, as its poor levels in the body increases the risk of aforementioned diseases.
Studies have proved that low levels of vitamin D makes people more vulnerable to high blood pressure. However, owing to several theories and results, it is only a mixed result. Nevertheless, its low amount may lead to changes in blood pressure. Hence, people with a deficiency of vitamin D must go for a medical check-up and seek advise on the intake of this nutrient so that any possibility of harm is eliminated.
- Parathyroid Hormone Problems:
Parathyroid glands, that are present in the neck, produce parathyroid hormones. These hormones are used for absorption of calcium and phosphorus. The low vitamin D levels in the body affect these hormones, resulting into a decreased absorption of calcium and phosphorous. This eventually leads to poor bone health.
- Immunity Problems:
Vitamin D helps in regulation of our immune system. Calcitriol, which is an important form of vitamin D, helps in immune system maintenance. The low levels of this nutrient invariably affect the immune system, leading to vulnerability to diseases and infections.
Not many of us know that vitamin D helps in insulin production and cell functioning, thereby maintaining proper blood sugar level. In case there is a deficiency in the body, this equilibrium is affected and hence the risk of diabetes increases.
- Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD):
SAD is a form of depression that occurs to people in winters due to the lack of sunlight. Generally, taking vitamin D supplements is touted to be a cure for SAD. However, no exact findings on the effectiveness of supplements of this vitamin have been established. Moreover, this nutrient helps in the functioning of neurotransmitters and hence its low quantity in the body leads to poor coordination among brain cells, a research suggests. Visit a medical expert to seek prescriptions on this disorder.
It has to be understood that low vitamin D has severe negative effects on the overall health of an individual, hence increasing its intake in diets is necessary. Some foods that are rich in this vital nutrient are liver oils, dairy products, eggs, saltwater fish, etc. Daily exposure to sunlight for at least 20 minutes is also essential for people who suffer from low levels of vitamin D.