Recognizing common vitamin D deficiency symptoms is important so that prompt action can be taken to correct a potential vitamin D deficiency. Everyone needs enough of this vitamin to function properly in daily life.
You may wonder why. Vitamin D is a very important vitamin that has powerful effects on various systems in your body. Unlike other vitamins, vitamin D acts as a hormone. Every cell in your body has a receptor for it.
A lack of vitamin D can lead to many health problems. That is why it is important to quickly detect and tackle any shortage. In this article, we describe 7 vitamin D deficiency symptoms that manifest themselves in many people over time.
How does a vitamin D deficiency arise?
After all, you can quickly supplement a deficiency of this vitamin with, for example, the right foods or vitamin D supplements, but that often does not solve the core of the problem. The right vitamin information can then offer handles.
Well, how does a vitamin D deficiency arise? Several factors may underlie this. What many people already know is that vitamin D is produced by your body when your skin comes into contact with sunlight. A deficiency of this vitamin can therefore often be linked to not spending enough time outdoors (in natural daylight).
To illustrate, people who live near the equator and are regularly exposed to sunlight are less likely to be deficient because their skin produces enough vitamin D to meet their body's needs. It is, therefore, necessary to spend sufficient time outside every day.
Other risk factors that can lead to vitamin D deficiency
But there are even more risk factors that can influence getting a vitamin D deficiency more quickly. Dark-skinned and elderly people often have an increased risk of vitamin D deficiency. In addition, menopausal women need more vitamin D.
This also applies to people who are obese or overweight. Their bodies sometimes cannot naturally produce enough vitamin D to provide their body processes with the right amount. A wide variety of vitamin D deficiency symptoms can arise from this.
Diet can also play an important role in the development of a vitamin D deficiency. If someone does not eat enough dairy products or fish, there is a chance that a deficiency of this vitamin will occur faster than average. Now that we have described who has an increased risk of a vitamin D deficiency, we will discuss the symptoms that often accompany a vitamin D deficiency.
Common Vitamin D Deficiency Symptoms
Vitamin D deficiency symptoms can be very diverse and not everyone will suffer from the same symptoms. If you suspect that you have a deficiency of this vitamin, it is wise to have your blood values checked by a medical specialist. You can think of your general practitioner or a doctor in the hospital.
Nevertheless, there are some common vitamin D deficiency symptoms that many people who have a vitamin D deficiency can relate to. Often the symptoms can be linked to physical complaints, but a deficiency of vitamin D can also cause a lot of unrest on a mental level.
Read on to find out which 7 vitamin D deficiency symptoms can indicate a vitamin D level that is too low.
1. A deficiency of vitamin D leads to psychological complaints
A vitamin D deficiency and psychological complaints often go hand in hand. So it's not surprising that many vitamin D deficiency symptoms can be related to mental health problems. You can think of negative thoughts or depressed feelings. This can of course happen occasionally, but if you have to deal with it almost continuously (and there is no logical explanation for it), then it is advisable to check your blood values.
A deficiency of vitamin D can be the cause of unexplained psychological complaints. Vitamin D is used throughout your body, as described earlier in this article; There are receptors everywhere that use this vitamin. This also applies to the brain: if there is a shortage of vitamin D, this can cause negative feelings, mild to moderate depression, and other psychological complaints.
2. A tired and lifeless feeling
Perhaps you used to feel more energetic and always wanted to do many things, but nowadays it takes a lot of effort. In other words, you can no longer burn ahead during the day.
There can be many reasons for this. Poor sleep, other vitamin deficiencies such as a lack of vitamin B12, an unhealthy diet…
But a lack of vitamin D can also lead to symptoms such as fatigue and sleepiness. If you've been feeling lethargic and tired for some time, it's a good idea to have your blood levels checked.
This way you can gradually exclude things that can cause a tired feeling. Such as a vitamin D deficiency, for example. However, always consult a doctor or nutritionist and never make a diagnosis on your own. To combat these kinds of symptoms in a quick, safe, and responsible way, it is necessary to call in a medical specialist who can help you with this.
3. Vitamin D Deficiency Hair Loss
Hair loss is regularly attributed to stress, which is certainly a common cause. However, when hair loss is severe, it can be the result of a nutrient deficiency or an underlying disease.
Low vitamin D levels are partly linked to the disease “alopecia areata”. This is an autoimmune disease characterized by severe hair loss, resulting in bald patches on the head and other parts of the body.
Not only vitamin D, but also many other nutrients can affect the health of your hair. However, if you experience a lot of hair loss, it is good to be aware of a possible vitamin D deficiency.
4. Bone Pain and Back Pain as Vitamin D Deficiency Symptoms
Vitamin D also helps improve and maintain bone health in several ways. For example, vitamin D can improve your body's calcium absorption. If you experience bone pain and back pain, this may indicate a lack of vitamin D. After all, your body cannot take in enough calcium.
Several studies have shown that vitamin D deficiency symptoms can be characterized by pain in the bones and back. In one controlled study, people with a vitamin D deficiency were almost twice as likely to have bone pain in their legs, ribs, and joints compared to people with enough vitamin D in their bodies.
5. A lack of vitamin D causes muscle soreness
After all, there are indications that a vitamin D deficiency can be a possible cause of muscle pain in both children and adults.
In addition to muscle pain, children who lack vitamin D can experience complaints such as growing pains.
Several studies have made it clear that combating this vitamin deficiency can reduce growing pains by an average of 57%. In short, vitamin D deficiency symptoms can also be linked to muscle pain and growing pains.
6. You are prone to infections and diseases
Have you noticed that you are more prone to infections and diseases lately? Then it is good to work on a better immune system. There are many ways to boost your immune system. Get plenty of exercises, eat the right foods, drink plenty of water…
But did you know that it is also important to maintain your vitamin D level for a well-functioning immune system? Sufficient vitamin D for a healthy immune system is crucial for fighting infections and diseases. If you've been feeling the flu or cold lately, check to see if you may have a vitamin D deficiency and make an appointment with your doctor.
7. Vitamin D Deficiency Symptom: Delayed Wound Healing
Finally, delayed wound healing can be included among the common vitamin D deficiency symptoms. Wound healing slows down as we age. But if it deteriorates very rapidly within a short period, then there may be a reason other than old age.
Think of a shortage of vitamin D: it has been shown that a too low vitamin D level stagnates or slows down wound healing (for example after an operation or after you have suffered an injury). Other nutrient deficiencies can also lead to slower wound healing, such as a lack of the mineral zinc.
Complementing a Vitamin D Deficiency
What should you do to replenish this vitamin deficiency as quickly as possible, so that you obtain the correct vitamin D level in your body in no time?
First of all, it is important to find out how this shortage came about. The reasons for a vitamin D deficiency are described at the beginning of this article. You can use these reasons as handles to prevent a vitamin D deficiency in the future.
Then the actual vitamin D deficiency can be replenished. Ideally, choose to remedy a vitamin D deficiency by making changes in your diet. For example, add vitamin D-rich foods to your diet.
The best way to get rid of vitamin deficiencies is to consume the right foods. In other words, the right diet will ensure that when you have an actual deficiency of this vitamin, the vitamin D deficiency symptoms disappear quickly.
You may want to consider adding the following vitamin D rich foods to your diet:
- Fatty fish (such as tuna)
- Cow's milk or soy milk
- Orange juice
In addition to foods, vitamin D supplements can also ensure that deficiencies are quickly reduced. This means there is a good chance that the vitamin D deficiency symptoms will quickly weaken and disappear completely. However, use a vitamin D supplement purely and only as a supplement to a healthy and varied diet.
It is also important to spend enough time outdoors so that your body can make enough vitamin D with the help of natural daylight (or sunlight). By striking the right balance between these three approaches (eating vitamin D-rich foods, taking vitamin D supplements, and spending enough time outdoors), a vitamin D deficiency will quickly be remedied.
Recognizing symptoms of vitamin D deficiency summarized
In this article, you have been able to read which people have a greater risk of a vitamin D deficiency. Then we went into more detail about common vitamin D deficiency symptoms that you should take into account. A deficiency of this vitamin can cause many complaints.
To improve your health in both the short and long term, it is necessary to reduce a vitamin D deficiency as quickly as possible. This can be done by spending enough time outdoors (where you are exposed to sunlight), eating the right foods, and possibly adding a vitamin D supplement to your diet.
Do you think you are deficient in this vitamin? Do you recognize yourself in one or more of the described vitamin D deficiency symptoms? Please contact a nutritionist or medical specialist. You can find out in consultation with them whether a vitamin D deficiency is actually at the root of your complaints.