Let’s talk a little about Vitamin D and Vitamin D side effects. Vitamin D, fondly known as the sunshine vitamin, is a fat soluble vitamin that holds many important and essential responsibilities in the human body, including:
- Bone health
- Maintenance of a healthy immune system
- Brain development
- Cardiovascular function
- Maintenance of a healthy respiratory system
Vitamin D is fat soluble and is unlike any other vitamin, in that the body can produce its own supply. This is done by exposing your skin to sunlight. When the body receives its vitamin D, it turns the vitamin into a hormone known as calcitriol.
Sources of vitamin D:
Not everyone has a continual source of sunlight, particularly those who live in colder countries. There are, however, many food sources and supplements that are rich in vitamin d, including:
- Cod liver oil
- Oily fish (e.g. trout)
- Extra lean pork ham
- Hard boiled eggs
- Soy yoghurt (plain)
Many of our modern day foods are fortified to contain all the essential vitamins and minerals we require in our daily diet to prevent deficiency
What happens if I don’t get enough vitamin D?
Vitamin D Side Effects
Vitamin D side effects is very rare and usually symptoms are mild or non-existent. Nevertheless, sufficient lack of vitamin D is dangerous. Symptoms of deficiency include:
- Bone pain
- Muscle weakness
- General sense of feeling unwell
- Increased risk to cardiovascular disease
- Cognitive impairment in older people
- Severe asthma in children
- Increased risk of the development of cancer
More severe cases of vitamin D deficiency can causes Rickets in children. This was common in older times, but it is extremely rare in modern day times.
What happens if I get too much vitamin D?
As with the majority of vitamins, it is nearly impossible to overdose on vitamin D through sunshine or foods alone. Nearly all cases are caused by supplements. But as the old saying goes, too much of a good thing is no good at all.
Symptoms of vitamin D overdose include:
- High calcium level in the blood
- Affects the absorption of certain drugs
- Appetite loss
- Dry mouth
- Metallic taste in the mouth
As mentioned previously, it is very rare to have an excess level of vitamin D through diet and sunshine alone. Nearly all supplements and multivitamins contain vitamin D, so be aware of how much you are consuming combined with your diet. By eating a balanced and varied diet and approx. 20-30 minutes of sunshine a day, your vitamin D levels should be within the recommended limits.
If you are concerned about getting the correct levels of nutrients, please seek advice from your medical professional or doctor. If you display any of the symptoms described above, it is advisable to get a blood test to rule out any vitamin D associated health problems.
This article is not intended to replace medical advice and you should always follow what is recommended by your doctor.