What is the role of vitamin D?
The winter season in the northern hemisphere seems in many ways fairy and fantastic. A lot of snow, winter joys, Christmas spirit. But, winter brings shorter days and less sunshine. And no matter how they say the sun is harmful to people, it is still the essential source of life. It provides ultraviolet rays, with the help of which we create vitamin D. Vitamin is known as “sunshine” for this reason. Without it, the body does not absorb calcium that is necessary for the development and health of the bones. That’s why there are more risks of osteoporosis and fractures during the winter. But vitamin D is not only crucial for bone health, but also in controlling few minerals such as phosphorus.
The consequences of vitamin D deficiency
When a person lives in a range with less sunny days, his body just does not get enough vitamin D, the bones become fragile, weak and prone to fractures. The skin is another organ fed equally from the same source.
Nevertheless, its role may be even more important than we think.
Vitamin D is directly linked to the control of many genes. Therefore it plays a vital role in the development of infections, cancer, and autoimmune disorders. An extensive analysis attended in Canada in 2008 on a large number of women and men over 60 have shown that those with a lack of “sunshine” have more cardiovascular problems and a risk of heart disease. Multiple sclerosis, breast cancer, and other conditions are listed as possible risks.
In addition to clinical tests, psychiatry has led vitamin D in direct coloration with many psychological illnesses, even with schizophrenia. Depression is a known problem for people living in regions with less sunny days, such as Scandinavia, where the sun doesn’t go up for a couple of months.
How to recoup vitamin D
To spend a few days a week for a minimum of 15 minutes in the sun is enough to absorb all the necessary vitamin D. However, a lot of factors determine this possibility – winter season, lack of time, closed space and even air pollution. Also, older than 60 have the chance of “sunbathing” half as much as people in the twenties. The color of the skin is another factor, so people from Africa with darker skin color generally have only a quarter of the value of vitamin D concerning people with white skin.
At some degree, it is likely to compensate vitamin D with a proper diet, but this is not enough because there are not enough foods rich in it. Can find it in salmon, tuna, milk, orange juice, cereals, but for an adequate intake, you need to eat plenty of food and fish fats. So, find suitable supplements – in this case are even recommended as a good alternative in the winter. Daily need for vitamin D is between 800 and 1000 IU.
One multivitamin pill usually contains about 400, but it is imperative to understand that if you take two pills, you will not enter the required amount of vitamin, but only make unnecessary complications, such as diarrhea. Nobody wants it. Instead, for example, calcium supplements have about 200 IU, and then take one pill of multivitamin and two calcium in a proper combination within a specific period. This should compensate vitamin D for the day. Keep in mind not to overdo the dose or to take more than 2000 IUs.