The Importance of Vitamin D

We’ve all heard about vitamin D, but did you know that most of us are not getting enough of this essential nutrient? 

Three-quarters of teenagers and adults are deficient in Vitamin D. So, why is vitamin D in particular so important? Here are some of the top reasons:

Most of Us are Deficient

As already mentioned, most people in the U.S. aren’t getting enough vitamin D. Vitamin D deficiency is a particular problem for:

  • Vegetarians and vegans (most dietary sources of vitamin D are animal products).
  • People over 65.
  • Darker-skinned people.
  • People who have higher BMIs.
  • People who live in high latitudes, above about 40 degrees north. In the winter, the atmosphere absorbs too much of the ultraviolet light we need to manufacture vitamin D. (Yes, this does mean some people may need to supplement more in the winter).
  • People who live in large cities with skyscrapers (the buildings reduce sun exposure).
  • People who are allergic to milk.
  • People who have issues that affect their digestive tract, such as Crohn’s disease, cystic fibrosis, and celiac disease.

As increasing sun exposure can cause other problems, such as sunburn and even cancer, supplementation is a great way to make it up.

Vitamin D Helps Keep Us From Getting Sick

Sadly, it’s not true that vitamin D can cure COVID-19. But vitamin D supports a healthy immune system in general. In fact, one of the reasons why we have flu season may be because we have less vitamin D in our systems in the winter. It’s not the main reason, but it’s likely a contributing factor. Supplementing vitamin D can thus help you get fewer sniffles.

Vitamin D also appears to have a potential protective factor against a number of chronic diseases, including diabetes and high blood pressure. It can even help lower your risk of getting certain cancers, especially colon cancer and cancers of the reproductive system. It has a strong preventive effect against multiple sclerosis.

It Improves Brain Function

Vitamin D is linked to proper functioning of your brain and central nervous system. Vitamin D acts a bit like a hormone, and it helps protect neurons. One study showed that people with severe vitamin D deficiency were more than twice as likely to be cognitively impaired than those with normal levels. Not having enough vitamin D appears to slow your ability to process information. There’s no indication that supplementing vitamin D can stave off cognitive decline, but certainly not getting enough can affect your judgment and brain functioning, and that’s enough reason on it’s own to make sure you have enough vitamin D.

It Strengthens Your Bones

Vitamin D is absolutely vital for bone health; in fact, random stress fractures are a known symptom of vitamin D deficiency. For older women, taking vitamin D along with calcium slows the progression of osteoporosis and can reduce the frequency of falls.

This also means vitamin D is vital for children. In extreme cases, vitamin D deficiency in children can cause rickets, which results in skeletal deformities. Vitamin D will not reduce your risk of breaking a bone in an accident, however.

Overall, making sure you get enough vitamin D is important. So, let’s talk about how to get enough.

Why Supplements?

There are three ways to get vitamin D. First, our bodies manufacture it from sunlight, but staying out in the sun too much may cause other health problems and, as already mentioned, in the winter the sun may not give you enough of the right kind of light.

There are not too many good dietary sources of vitamin D, which is probably why we evolved the handy ability to synthesize it in the first place. You can get it from fatty fish and eggs, and some foods are fortified with vitamin D. Milk, orange juice and cereal provide some, but these aren’t great sources for those that follow a low carb or keto diet. But generally, your diet doesn’t contain enough, especially if you avoid animal products. Mushrooms are a great source of vitamin D for vegetarians.

Because of this, quality vitamin D supplements are very important. For many people, taking a vitamin D supplement may be the best way to ensure adequate intake, particularly D3.This is where Metagenics supplements come in, providing high quality, thoroughly tested, pharmaceutical supplements for vitamin D and other vital nutrients. It’s imperative that you thoroughly research any supplement that you are taking since this is an unregulated market. This is why we trust and recommend Metagenics. 

Metagenics supplements are among the best and can give you the right amount of vitamin D to keep your levels steady in the body . We recommend Metagenics specifically because of their vigorous quality control and pharmaceutical grade products. We carry them in both offices, offer discounted online ordering options, and we even take them ourselves! 

Contact us for more information.