Vitamin D is an important daily essential, supporting bone and muscle health. Here’s what happens when you’re deficient, and how to get more vitamin D.

Vitamin D is a vital nutrient for the human body. It can help us stay healthy, and the best news is you can find it in two of everyone’s favourite things: sunshine and great food!

However, even with plenty of available sunshine, many of us work or study indoors throughout the day, and often stay out of the direct sunlight when outdoors in order to avoid burning. These habits can reduce the amount of natural vitamin D gained from the sun. Those with darker skin tones also need more time in the sun to produce the same amount of the vitamin than paler people.

Here’s a little more information about why you need vitamin D, what happens if you don’t get enough, and how you can boost your intake if you’re short on this essential vitamin.

Why the body needs vitamin D

Vitamin D supports strong bones, it helps your muscles to work well, and it promotes overall health.

It does all of this by helping your body absorb calcium, which is essential for bone and muscle strength. Vitamin D also helps your immune system, as you may experience immune system problems if you don’t have enough vitamin D.

While we know that vitamin D is essential for these key functions, there’s also ongoing research into specific areas where it could offer added benefits.

For example, some studies suggest that vitamin D may help to reduce falls and fractures in older people.

What happens if you don’t get enough vitamin D?

For children, lack of vitamin D can lead to rickets, a condition that causes the bones to soften which results in bowed legs and knock knees.

For adults, a deficiency in vitamin D can be hard to diagnose because the symptoms are not usually extreme but are quite general. These symptoms include aches, pains, and cramps in the muscles, and softer bones that break more easily.

For older adults, vitamin D can become dangerous, as the weakening of the bones and muscles due to a deficiency can mean more falls, and more falls that result in breaks. In fact, deficiencies are linked to osteoporosis, a condition characterised by low bone density.

Those most at risk include anyone living in less sunny areas of the country, those with darker skin tones, anyone who spends most of their time indoors, and the elderly. If you tick one or more of those boxes, it’s a good idea to make a conscious effort to ensure you’re getting enough of this essential vitamin by topping up your levels with a vitamin D supplement.

How to get more vitamin D

Vitamin D is abundantly available thanks to sunshine. Anything from a daily walk to taking your lunch break outdoors should be enough to top up your levels, although it’s always important to be sun smart and not risk burning your skin. Additionally, these methods may not work as well during overcast or rainy days.

Another great source of vitamin D is food. It can be found in oily fish (such as salmon and tuna), as well as eggs, milk, milk products, and liver.

Finally, you can also top up your levels with vitamin D supplements.

Liposomal vitamin D is available in vitamin D lipo-sachets, which support bone and muscle health. Being liposomal, these supplements are better and more easily absorbed into the body than standard forms such as gummies or pills, and the gel formulation may be preferable for those who dislike pill-form supplements.

Vitamin D supplements are easy to find at any pharmacy or health food store. These are usually in pill form, or you can consider general supplements that include vitamin D.

As always, chat to your doctor first before adding supplements to your daily routines.

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Disclamer: This content is for informational purposes only and should not substitute advice from your healthcare professional. If symptoms persist or you require specialist advice, please consult your healthcare professional.



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