Vitamin D3 is one of the most important fat-soluble vitamins. Fat-soluble vitamins are stored in the liver and fatty tissues, and are eliminated much more slowly than water-soluble vitamins which need to be replaced often. Deficiency of vitamin D3 can cause many problems from mild to severe to life threatening in the form of cancers.
Not only is D referred to as a vitamin it is also a precursor to a powerful steroid hormone called calcitriol and works with other vitamins and hormones to help build strong bones and teeth along with other important bodily functions such as hormone balance and a healthy immune system. Studies are showing D3 is important for normal cell growth and differentiation through the body actually becoming a part of the physical composition of cells, regulating and assisting in the buildup and breakdown of healthy tissue. In essence in regulates the body’s process that keeps us healthy.
Symptoms of D3 deficiency include colds and flu, dental problems, high blood pressure, back pain, depression, multiple sclerosis, type 2 diabetes, parathyroid problems, immune system problems, heart disease and stroke, osteoporosis, insulin resistance, weight loss, rickets (soft bones in children), osteomalacia (softening of bones in adults), muscle pain, weak bones and bone fractures, bone pain, fatigue and low energy, mood swings, obesity, PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome), lung cancer, ovarian cancer, colon cancer, asthma, breast cancer, and sleep irregularities. Even fibromyalgia could be related to deficiency.
Looks like a bunch of symptoms. One way to be sure of where you stand is to get a vitamin D test. This will show your levels, but be careful most of the ranges in the U.S. for normal are not up to date with the new studies that have shown current minimum levels are just not enough, especially if you are deficient already. Those who cannot adequately absorb or convert vitamin D3 because of intestinal concerns like Crohn’s disease and IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) and renal problems may become deficient.
Unfortunately, most medical school training does not include being taught about deficiencies and when to test for them. Even less is understood about how to correct the problem. What is known is that more patients are becoming deficient. Diagnosis is easy and treatment with high quality supplements is safe and can bring wonderful results. Even spending 30 to 40 minutes a day in the sun without sunscreen will help.
Just remember, it is your body and you know you better than anyone. If you have any of these symptoms or have been diagnosed with some of the problems listed, have your doctor check your vitamin D levels. Try the highest quality supplement available; a supplement that has proof it works. If you are already deficient, you may need to take a higher dose right off the bat to get your levels up and yourself feeling better. Then you can maintain with a steady dose.