How much vitamin D does your body need to function normally? Daily recommendations have changed; ten years ago, doctors believed that an adult person needed nearly 400 International Units a day. Today, daily recommendations are different. Let us learn more about this important vitamin.
Vitamin D is actually a group of vitamins. Two major forms of vitamin D are vitamin D2 and D3, both of which are available in the form of supplements. D2 is produced by fungi, whereas D3 is produced in the skin of animals and humans. Vitamin D3 is believed to be more effective than D2, and it is used in treating various diseases.
Vitamin D3 is found in animal-derived products, like eggs, meat, fish oil and dairy products. The quantities found in these foods are not considered good enough to satisfy our daily needs. Sunlight remains the best natural source of vitamin D. Eating foods that contain this vitamin will certainly be helpful, but you won’t be able to get enough vitamin D if you don’t spend time in the sun.
Who Is at Risk of Getting Deficient in Vitamin D?
● People who live in the northern countries may lack vitamin D, because their sun exposure is limited.
● Older population is also at risk.
● Dark-skinned people who live in cold climates can lack vitamin D because dark skin needs more time to produce this vitamin. Therefore, people with dark skin have to spend even more time in the sun, which can be difficult in cold weather countries.
Why Do We Need Vitamin D?
Vitamin D is necessary for normal growth and development of the body. It is needed for proper absorption of phosphorus and calcium. This is extremely important for healthy bones. Children who lack vitamin D are at risk of getting rickets. Adults can develop a similar condition, called “osteomalacia”.
Vitamin D is helpful in strengthening the immune system. People who are deficient in vitamin D are prone to various infections, because the immune system is not strong enough to protect the body.
Doctors believe that vitamin D can be helpful in patients with multiple sclerosis, cancer, diabetes, hypertension and cardiovascular disease.
What Is Vitamin D Deficiency?
● General weakness
● Bone fractures
● Constant fatigue
● Muscle pain
Vitamin D deficiency can be treated with supplements. If diagnosed early, it will be easier to treat and the therapy will last shorter.
How Much Vitamin D Does Your Body Need
● According to what doctors say, an adult person needs nearly 600 International Units.
● People who are over 70 need 800 International Units.
● Tolerable limit is increased, and it ranges from 2,000 IU to nearly 4,000 IU.
As you can see, daily recommendations have changed. Until recently, all of us believed that 400 International Units would be enough to satisfy our needs for vitamin D.
People who live in cold climates will need to take larger doses of vitamin D than people who live in warm climates. Older people have to take higher doses as well.
According to some experts, children can take 400 International Units, and the upper limit is nearly 1,000 International Units. However, these figures cannot be applied to all people (or children).
Before you start taking any supplements, you must talk to your doctor first. Never give your child any supplements without consulting your doctor.