The human body has a warning mechanism that immediately points out when it is lacking Vitamin D. Low vitamin D levels can result in dangerous consequences.
Vitamins are among the most important nutrients in your diet. For example, proper vitamin D levels are extremely necessary if you want your body to carry out many biological processes.
Overall, without them, it would be impossible for your organism to stay healthy. Due to that, you should eat foods with good amounts of vitamins. It is important to know that there are times when multivitamin supplements are not appropriate to deal with certain ailments and the only way to get every vitamin’s benefits is to eat their natural carriers.
Among all vitamins, there is one that is very popular. This article is going to focus on vitamin D, also known as “the vitamin of growth”, and how can you know if your vitamin D levels are falling very low.
Vitamin D Levels
If you do not eat enough vitamin D rich foods, you will probably begin to show some symptoms and you will increase the risk of suffering from some illnesses. The suitable vitamin D level is 10,000 IU (international unit) or more in three months. It is also important to mention that there is a maximum limit for vitamin D level.
The following points illustrate the appropriate level for human beings:
- 9-19 ng/ml of blood: insufficient
- 20-29 ng/ml of blood: sufficient
- 30-60 ng/ml of blood: optimal
- More than 150 ng/ml of blood: toxic
Try to maintain your vitamin D levels within the normal range. Being at the top or the bottom can result in terrible consequences! For example, taking more than the necessary amount can reverse the effects of vitamin D and, instead of strengthening the bones, it could weaken them.
What happens if your vitamin D levels are below the limit?
The answer to this question is very simple and dangerous: you can get a life-threaten sickness. So far, studies into this issue have linked mental health disorders to low vitamin D levels. Here are two examples.
A few years ago, a study on vitamin D levels was published in the journal “Neurology”. This paper found that the lack of vitamin D in adults was linked to some forms of dementia. These people had twice the chances of suffering from dementia than people with normal vitamin D levels.
The study involved more than 1600 people aged 65 or older who were not suffering from dementia at the beginning of the study. It proved that people with low vitamin D levels were 53% more likely to be affected by dementia plus they also had a 70% increase in the risk of developing the Alzheimer’s disease.
Meanwhile, those patients with severe deficiency showed a 125% increase in the risk of suffering from dementia and over a 120% increase in the risk of developing Alzheimer disease.
The research also mentioned that both claims were based on observational results rather than a direct cause-effect relationship between low vitamin D levels and the other illnesses. Nevertheless, the facts are shocking and none of you wants to take the risk.
A second example is Schizophrenia. About 1.1% of adults in the United States are affected by this disease. People who are less exposed to ultraviolet radiation (meaning low vitamin D levels) are more likely to suffer from this mental disorder.
Damages in the bones
Vitamin D is responsible for calcium absorption. Calcium is the main nutrient to form and strengthen the bones. Then, if you do not have the required vitamin D levels, you will probably be more likely to suffer from a fracture or osteoporosis.
These two consequences are commonly found in adults. But when the problems with vitamin D levels start in childhood, everything is even more complicated. The lack of calcium prevents the bones’ growth and weakens them, which leads to rickets.
Other diseases related to low vitamin D levels
For the male population, the consequences could be worse, including erectile dysfunction and an increased risk of prostate cancer. Likewise, heart diseases like atherosclerosis, hypertension, and diabetes seem to have some relation to vitamin D deficiency.
All these illnesses are more common in afro-descendent and elder population living in cold climates.
Some signs of low vitamin D level
After seeing how much dangerous a lack of vitamin D could be, you have to be aware of the signs of low vitamin D levels. The most common symptoms include fatigue, depression, gut issues, head sweating, and bone pain or unjustified fractures.
Then, if you feel that your sun exposure is not enough, if you are an older adult living in a high latitude country, and you also have any of these symptoms, you must go to your doctor to get a vitamin D levels’ test.
Finally, you must remember that the best preventive measure is to maintain a healthy diet. This should be always your first priority.
By Daniel G.