TheboldAge takes a look at whether we should take vitamin D? 4 reasons to ensure you’re getting enough of the ‘sunshine vitamin’
By Lisa Salmon. Published 2020-11-10BOLD-Wellbeing
As researchers look at whether vitamin D can help guard against Covid-19, here’s four more reasons to top up on the sunshine vitamin
1. Stronger bonesVitamin D helps regulate the absorption of calcium and phosphorus, so a lack of the vitamin can lead to poor calcification of the skeleton. The BNF explains that prolonged vitamin D deficiency in children leads to rickets, which can cause bone pain, poor growth and bone deformities including bowed legs, curvature of the spine, and thickening of the ankles, wrists and knees, and fractures.While rickets was for a long time virtually wiped out in the UK, due to fortification of foods and improved diets, in recent years, cases are again being reported. In addition, while osteoporosis in adults isn’t directly caused by vitamin D deficiency, the vitamin can help manage the disease, says the BNF.
2. Stronger musclesIn adults, vitamin D deficiency can lead to osteomalacia, which causes aching bones and muscles plus muscle weakness, which can make standing and walking difficult.
3. Better teethBecause of its role in regulating the the absorption of calcium, vitamin D also helps keep teeth strong, says the BNF.
4. Improved immunityA 2019 University of Edinburgh study suggests low levels of vitamin D may lead to an increase in immune responses potentially linked to a raised risk of autoimmune conditions, such as multiple sclerosis.“There are vitamin D receptors on many immune cells,” says Ruxton, “suggesting that it has a widespread role in optimal immunity – an important point as we face a continuation of the Covid-19 crisis, just when the winter flu and cold season approaches.”
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