Vitamin D has several important functions. For example, it helps regulate the amount of calcium and phosphate in the body. These nutrients are needed to keep bones and teeth healthy. A lack of vitamin D can lead to bone deformities such as rickets in children, and bone pain and tenderness as a result of a condition called osteomalacia in adults.
Research has shown that adults should take a minimum of 5,000 IU per day for three months.
The elderly, obese and dark skinned people should take more.
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Vitamin D can be produced in the body as well as from your diet. The human body can also make vitamin D from direct sunlight, or an ultraviolet light source, hits the skin. Ten to 20 minutes of sun exposure 3 times a week is all that’s needed. Vitamin D helps build strong and healthy bones and teeth. A person who does not get enough vitamin D and calcium is at a higher risk for bone mass loss, which is known as osteoporosis.
Vitamin D turns into a steroid hormone by the body, vitamin D possesses a crucial connection with gene functioning. It significantly impacts how much calcium the body can absorb, and it is vital for bone density and prevention against osteoporosis. However, vitamin D may have even further capabilities. More and more new research finds that D may play an important role in fighting diseases such as colon, breast, and prostate cancers.
While foods such as salmon, sardines, mackerel, and fortified products contain vitamin D, the body largely produces this substance from sun rays absorbed through the skin. This puts many people at risk, especially older people that often stay indoors and people with darker skin that require longer time for sun absorption. Although D is vital for bone growth in child development, studies reveal that a substantial number of children may be deficient as well. Nevertheless, even if people are not members of any of these populations, they should not let down their guard. It is easy for harmfully low amounts to go unnoticed. Due to vitamin D’s importance, it is advisable for everyone to talk with their doctor. A simple blood test can reveal a deficiency.