Benefits Of Vitamin D Supplements
The vitamin D that we get from food or supplements is not fully activated. It requires activation by the liver and then by the kidney's before it becomes fully activated. Therefore, people with liver or kidney disorders are at a higher risk of osteoporosis.
It is unique because it is synthesized in the skin during exposure of the sun’s ultraviolet rays. Exposing the face and arms to the suns rays for fifteen minutes three times a week is effective. However, the sun is not a reliable source because many factors affect its ability to penetrate the skin. These factors include the use of sunscreens, clothing, dark pigment and environmental conditions; such as dust, fog, smog and smoke. Also, as we age, our ability to make vitamin D diminishes.
Consider discussing with your doctor taking vitamin D supplements if you do not think you are getting enough of the nutrient from your diet, or if you do not get enough exposure to the sun.
The Health Benefits Of Vitamin D
- enhances immunity
- helps fight breast and colon cancer
- involved in regulation of the heartbeat
- necessary for growth and development of bones and teeth in children
- necessary for thyroid function and normal blood clotting
- prevention and treatment of
- protects against muscle weakness
- required for calcium and phosphorus absorption and utilization
Vitamin D Food Sources:
Alfalfa, butter, cod liver oil, cold water fish, fortified dairy products, dark green leafy vegetables, egg yolk, fatty salt-water fish, fish liver oils, halibut, liver, milk, oatmeal, salmon, sardines, sweet potatoes, tuna and vegetable oil.
Herbal Sources Of Vitamin D
Alfalfa, eyebright, mullein, red raspberry and thyme.
Signs of Deficiency:
Vitamin D deficiency results in diseases that are characterized by soft, poorly formed bones
- osteomalacia in adults (mainly women)
- rickets (in children)
Lesser degrees of deficiency may be characterized by a burning sensation in the mouth and throat, diarrhea, insomnia, loss of appetite, visual problems and weight loss.
Possible Side Effects And Warnings:
Vitamin D has the most potential of all vitamins to be toxic. High intake can result in kidney stones and calcium deposits in the internal organs.
It should not be taken without calcium.
Intestinal disorders and liver and gallbladder malfunctions interfere with absorption of vitamin D.
The use of antacids, some cholesterol lowering drugs, mineral oil or steroid hormones (cortisone) also interfere with absorption which can increase the body’s demand for this vitamin.
Thiazide diuretics disturb the calcium/vitamin D ratio.