Vitamin is an important component of health, without which the body cannot function properly. However, as many people remain locked up, the absence of sunlight can cause severe vitamin D deficiency.
Why is vitamin D3 important?
Dr. Harish Naik, Neurosurgical Consultant, Hiranandani Hospital, Vashi-A Fortis Network Hospital says “Vitamin D3 has many mechanisms by which it improves bone health, controls neurological problems, reduces the risk of microbial infection, increases cellular natural immunity and adaptive immunity”.
What is Vitamin D?
It is a steroid hormone, activated endogenously with the effect of ultraviolet radiation received from the sun or from food sources and supplements. Our body needs vitamin D to absorb calcium in order to promote and maintain bone health. We also need vitamin D for other important bodily functions, the doctor explains.
Vitamin D deficiency
According to Dr. Naik, Vitamin D insufficiency is a public health problem affecting over one billion people across India. Too little vitamin D results in soft bones in children (rickets) and fragile, malformed bones in adults (osteomalacia), it can also lead to serious medical conditions.
Vitamin D deficiency has now been linked to breast cancer, colon cancer, prostate cancer, heart disease, depression, weight gain and other diseases. During this pandemic, lack of sunlight activities and isolation greatly affected humans. “We have encountered many patients who have developed bone problems, depression and neurological problems ̵
Symptoms of vitamin D deficiency in adults
Fatigue, pain and a general feeling of not feeling well, severe bone or muscle pain, weakness that can cause difficulty walking up stairs or getting up from the floor or a low chair, stress fractures, especially in your legs, pelvis , and hips, warns the doctor.
Alternative / food sources for vitamin D3:
* Cod liver oil
* Egg yolk
* Milk (enriched)
* Breakfast products (enriched)
* Yogurt (fortified)
* Orange juice (enriched)
In addition to appreciating food sources, people, especially women and the elderly, need to be screened regularly for vitamin D deficiency through a pathological blood test and bone density test. This is important for general health and well-being, ”concludes Dr. Naik.
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