What Causes Vitamin D Deficiency
What causes vitamin D Deficiency? Vitamin D is on of the most common types of vitamin deficiency. This condition appears as a result of not ingesting enough preformed vitamin D (found in eggs, fish, fortified milk and cod liver oil), lack of sun exposure (the sun helps us produce this vitamin), and malabsorption (due to conditions that keep vitamin D from converting into active metabolites).
Certain conditions keep us from getting enough sun exposure, people who live near the north pole, people with dark skin, old and young people who donâ€™t go out too much, and people who cover their skin frequently (like for example in some Muslim countries) can suffer of vitamin D deficiency caused by inadequate sun exposure. Sun exposure is the deciding factor in our levels of vitamin D, since we donâ€™t get too much of it from food.
Having said that, it is also good to keep a healthy diet to supplement any lack of vitamin D production. Infants for example may benefit greatly from a diet with fortified milk, since this type of milk has added vitamins that common milk doesnâ€™t have.
The RDA (Recommended Dietary Allowance) can help us determine the amount of vitamin D needed to avoid deficiencies. On adults, the RDA is 200 IU a day (IU stands for International Units). It is wise to choose food containing higher levels of this vitamin, or else weâ€™ll need great amounts of one food to get to the needed levels.
Now that you know the causes, know that it is greatly a matter of prevention. You should go out everyday for a few minutes at least to get the help of the rays of the sun and ensure that you have a good, healthy diet that meets your nutritional needs.
If a vitamin D deficiency is prolonged it will have an impact on your bones and will develop bowed legs. This luckily is not as common as before, there are fewer cases. This condition is called rickets or osteomalacia (varies according to the age of the patient) and the symptoms include weakness in muscles, easily fractured bones, reduced bone strength and waddling walk.
Excessive sun exposure can also be dangerous, making us run risk of developing skin cancer. It is good to also ask a doctor what the ideal sun exposure time is in your specific case to help the production of vitamin D in a responsible, healthy way.