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Vitamin D is a nutrient that your body needs for various functions. Many people may not make or consume enough vitamin D, and there are some signs that the body can show about this deficiency.
The body produces vitamin D when bare skin is exposed to the sun. However, clouds, smog, older age, and dark-colored skin reduce the amount of vitamin D produced by the skin. The National Institutes of Health note that the skin does not produce vitamin D from sunlight through a window.
Vitamin D helps absorb calcium, muscles need it to move, and nerves need it to carry messages between your brain and your body. In addition, it is an important vitamin for the immune system.
5 signs that show low vitamin D
1. Poor bone health
A shortage of vitamin D can lead to weak and sore muscles. In children, vitamin D deficiency causes rickets, a disease in which bones become soft, weak, misshapen and painful. In adolescents and adults, vitamin D deficiency causes osteomalacia, a disorder that causes bone pain and muscle weakness.
2. Caries and periodontitis
Because vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium, it is essential for healthy teeth and gums.
When vitamin D levels are unregulated, teeth become weak, making them highly susceptible to cavities. Low levels of vitamin D have also been linked to an increased risk of periodontitis, according to research published in the Journal of Periodontal Research, this may be due to the vitamin’s connection to the immune system.
3. Hair loss
“There is a link between vitamin D deficiency and alopeciaand it’s often one of the common causes of hair thinning or hair loss in men or women,” Arielle Levitan, an internal medicine doctor in Chicago, tells WebMD Connect to Care.
When the body doesn’t have enough vitamin D, the keratinocytes in hair follicles have trouble regulating hair growth and hair loss.
4. Tiredness and bad mood
Vitamin D is necessary for the brain to function properly. Some studies have found links between low levels of vitamin D in the blood and an increased risk of depression.
5. Low immunity, frequent colds and infections
Vitamin D deficiencies can alter immune responses. The Harvard School of Public Health explains that the active form of vitamin D attenuates the damaging inflammatory response of some white blood cells, while also increasing the production of microbe-fighting proteins in immune cells.
Foods with vitamin D
Dietary sources of vitamin D include: cod liver oil, trout, salmon, and white mushrooms exposed to ultraviolet light. It can also be obtained through fortified foods.
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