Did you know that vitamin D deficiency is one of the most common nutrient deficiencies in the world? About 1 billion people worldwide are not getting the proper levels of this nutrient. Many of them don’t even know it! They may show some of the signs that they are lacking this essential vitamin and chalk it up to aging or bad genes. So to help you identify if this is something you are dealing with, this article will look at some common symptoms of vitamin D deficiency.
Why Are So Many People Lacking Vitamin D?
Vitamin D is an essential element for many processes in the human body, but many people are lacking in this necessary nutrient. This can be due to a few factors, including lack of access to vitamin D-rich food and limited sunlight exposure. Modern habits, such as staying in office buildings during the day and avoiding the sun’s direct rays, reduces a person’s natural vitamin D intake. Additionally, today’s diet doesn’t always include enough dietary sources of this nutrient, even if you’re eating healthy foods.
However, the need for these sources remains, meaning it is important to supplement your body with other sources like fortified foods or supplements. With these helpful options and increased awareness of the importance of providing enough vitamin D daily, anyone can keep their levels optimal.
Symptoms of Vitamin D Deficiency
Unfortunately, it is not always obvious when you’re not getting enough vitamin D. Many of the symptoms are vague and can be due to other causes. So if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, you must talk to your doctor about getting a blood test for vitamin D deficiency.
Fatigue is one of the most common symptoms of vitamin D deficiency. This type of fatigue is not only physical but also mental or emotional, making it difficult to operate at your best. In addition, it can lead to other serious problems, such as the increased risk of depression and heart disease. Vitamin D deficiency can also lead to muscle aches or cramps, which can also contribute to discomfort and an overall feeling of exhaustion.
Another common symptom of vitamin D deficiency is trouble sleeping. Trouble sleeping can be due to the fatigue and pain mentioned above, but it can also manifest as an inability to sleep at all (insomnia) or a disrupted sleep cycle. When your body lacks vitamin D, it cannot properly regulate its hormone levels, which then impacts your sleeping patterns. Without proper levels of this nutrient in your system, you may be tossing and turning all night long or unable to fall asleep altogether.
One of the most troubling symptoms of vitamin D deficiency is mood changes. For example, if you suddenly feel more anxious or tearful, this could indicate a vitamin D deficiency in your body. This can happen because the hormone that needs to be regulated to control these mood fluctuations is also involved with other processes related to vitamin D. Without enough of this nutrient, you can feel much more irritable and anxious than you used to.
Often overlooked, a vitamin D deficiency can also lead to frequent infections, such as colds or the flu. This is because vitamin D helps support your body’s innate and adaptive immunity, allowing you to fight off infectious diseases more effectively. Unfortunately, studies have shown that children and adults with low vitamin D levels are more likely to suffer from viral illnesses than those with sufficient levels of the vitamin. This may even lead to other problems, such as a weakened immune system and reduced ability to repair damaged cells.
Like the fatigue and muscle aches mentioned above, joint pain is another symptom of vitamin D deficiency that can make it challenging to go about your normal daily activities. This inflammation and soreness in the joints can be due to several factors, including the weakened immune system brought on by the lack of this nutrient. However, it can also be due to vitamin D’s role in bone health and repairing damaged tissue.
Slowly Healing Wounds
If you have noticed a delay in healing from cuts or scrapes, this may be another symptom of a vitamin D deficiency. This nutrient affects the whole body, including your skin and tissues, meaning that lacking it can impair your ability to heal wounds quickly and effectively. Typically, when you have a cut or scrape, you expect it to heal relatively quickly. However, when your body lacks the proper amount of vitamin D, it can take much longer for these wounds to heal and often leave behind scars or discoloration on the skin.
The most shocking of these symptoms is hair loss. A lack of this vital nutrient can result in hair loss or dandruff. Not only is it a sign that your body is not getting what it needs, but it can also be uncomfortable and embarrassing. If you have noticed an increase in these conditions or even a general thinning of the hair, it may be a sign that your body cannot absorb and use the vitamin D you are consuming.
Loss Of Appetite
Depending on the length of time your body lacks vitamin D, you may also experience a decrease in your appetite. A loss of appetite can be due to the other symptoms mentioned above, such as fatigue and mood changes, but it could also be because your body cannot correctly absorb nutrients from food. Without enough of this nutrient, your body may lack energy or desire to eat and may begin to feel weak or tired.
The final symptom you should be aware of is a pale appearance on your skin. This is because vitamin D plays a significant role in calcium absorption and bone health. Without enough of this nutrient, you may find that your body cannot build new tissue properly, which can eventually cause your skin’s coloration to appear paler or even gray. Like some of the other symptoms on this list, this can be due to various factors, but it is crucial to be aware of this symptom and see your doctor if you experience it.
Be Mindful Of The Symptoms of Vitamin D Deficiency
If you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, it may be a sign of a vitamin D deficiency. This condition can affect many aspects of your health, including your immune system, bone health, and skin appearance. Eating a healthy diet rich in vitamin D-rich foods, such as fatty fish, mushrooms, and dairy, is essential to get the proper amount of this nutrient in your body.
In addition, consider taking a supplement or speaking to your doctor about other treatment options. With the proper care and attention, you can overcome this condition and enjoy all of the benefits vitamin D offers.