Vitamin D is a critical component of an individual’s overall health and wellness. While most of us have heard of Vitamin D, also called the “sunshine” vitamin, many people don’t know how to increase their vitamin D intake or or they’re unaware of all the health benefits

that it naturally provides. Many people also don’t know about the prospective harms of vitamin D deficiency, an unfortunately common condition that many people unknowingly struggle with due to a lack of regular sun exposure and dietary vitamin D sources.

In the article below, our medical experts from Prime IV Hydration & Wellness will explore the basics that you should understand regarding vitamin D deficiency, essential sources of vitamin D, and the critical benefits that it can provide. Please continue to learn more and consider exploring our selection of other educational health resources for even more information that can help improve your daily functioning.

Related: The Benefits of Vitamin B-12

What is Vitamin D, and Why is it Important?

Before we explore the basics of vitamin D deficiency, it’s essential to explain what vitamin D is and why it’s so crucial. Vitamin D is a critical fat-soluble nutrient that the human body needs for building and maintaining strong, healthy bones through the absorption of calcium. It serves as an antioxidant, an anti-inflammatory, and actively supports immune health, brain cell activity, and other critical cellular functions. 

Vitamin D comes in a range of foods- such as fatty fish and fortified dairy products- but people primarily receive it when their skin is exposed to sunlight, which triggers vitamin D development from cholesterol. Vitamin D also comes in multiple forms, including vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol) and vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol).

How Much Vitamin D Do You Need?

The total amount of vitamin D that a person requires depends on their age. According to medical experts, the recommended daily amounts of vitamin D in international units (IU) are:

  • 400 IU for infants between 0 and 12 months old
  • 600 IU for children, teens, and adults between 1 and 70 years old
  • 600 IU for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding
  • 800 IU for adults 71 years and older

The Benefits of Vitamin D

A woman flexing for the camera to show off her bone and muscle strength

Vitamin D is responsible for many important bodily functions and provides the body with several health benefits. Some of the more common benefits it can provide include;

  • Regulating the absorption of calcium and phosphorus
  • Decreasing the risk of disease including multiple sclerosis and heart disease
  • Fighting depression
  • Supporting normal bone and teeth growth
  • Assisting with weight loss
  • Impede sleep habits and insomnia reduction

Vitamin D is essential for preventing illness and infections like the flu. Former CDC Chief, Dr. Tom Frieden, even suggested that Vitamin D may reduce the risk of Coronavirus infection. This statement has since been backed by a clinical study published online in April by a medical scientist in the Philippines, Dr. Mark Alipio. According to his research, of 49 patients with mild symptoms of Covid-19 in three hospitals in southern Asian countries, only two had low vitamin D levels; of 104 patients with severe symptoms, only four did not have low levels of vitamin D. The more severe the symptoms, the more likely a patient, was to be not just low but deficient in the vitamin.

Other medical research indicates that vitamin D can be very beneficial when given to patients experiencing a variety of other harmful medical conditions, including;

  • Cancer
  • Heart disease
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Osteoporosis
  • Osteomalacia
  • Psoriasis
  • Rickets
  • Inherited bone disorders
  • Bone loss related to aging
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Cognitive decline

Related: 7 Ways Vitamin C Boosts Your Health and Wellness

What is Vitamin D Deficiency?

Vitamin D deficiency is what its name implies, a deficiency or lack of an appropriate amount of vitamin D within the body. It’s typically defined as having blood levels below 20 ng/mL. However, those with 21-29 ng/mL levels are considered vitamin D insufficient. While vitamin D insufficiency isn’t as bad as a full-on deficiency, it can still increase the risk of developing some of the common signs and symptoms we’ll explore below.

Despite its many benefits, people still struggle to maintain the proper level of Vitamin Dfrom working indoors and not receiving regular sun exposure. Because of this, vitamin D deficiency has become one of the most common nutritional deficiencies globally. In America alone, an estimated 42% of citizens have Vitamin D deficiencies. However, this percentage jumps to nearly 82% for African American adults and 63% for Hispanic adults. Around the globe, an estimated 1 billion people have low vitamin D levels in their blood.

Do you suffer from the symptoms related to migraines, fatigue, dehydration, athletic injuries, and more? Our medical experts at Prime IV Hydration & Wellness are here to help you find the relief you’ve been looking for, so please get in touch with us today to learn about everything we can do to help.

Signs and Symptoms of Vitamin D Deficiency

A lack of appropriate vitamin D within the body can cause people to experience a number of symptoms including:

  • Getting sick frequently,
  • Frequent infection
  • Consistently feeling fatigued or tired
  • Back pain
  • Sore bones
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Slow wound healing
  • Bone loss
  • Muscle pain
  • Weight gain
  • Hair loss
  • Insomnia

Common Causes of Vitamin D Deficiency

As stated above, people typically experience vitamin D deficiency because of a lack of regular sun exposure and because they do not have enough vitamin D-rich foods in their diet. However, there are several other potential causes of vitamin D deficiencies that people should know about. This is especially important to note because certain lifestyle factors and underlying conditions can substantially increase a person’s risk of vitamin D deficiencies. Some include;

  • Living away from the equator or in areas with little sunlight throughout the year
  • Working at night
  • Old age
  • Having darker skin
  • Having gastric bypass surgery
  • Being overweight or obese 
  • Chronic kidney or liver disease
  • Hyperparathyroidism
  • Medical conditions that affect nutrient absorption
  • Using certain medications that impact vitamin D metabolism, including steroids or statins

Related: Immune System Boosting as a Potential COVID-19 Treatment

Important Sources of Vitamin D

A pile of yellow vitamin D supplements

Aside from regular sun exposure- the ultimate source of vitamin D- there are other ways people can achieve the needed levels of this essential vitamin. We strongly recommend trying out some over-the-counter supplements after talking with your doctor about dosage recommendations if you’re looking to treat your vitamin D deficiency. 

Please note that taking too many vitamin D supplements has the potential to make people sick, so please consult with your doctor before adding them to your regular routine. Additionally, pure vitamin D supplements work well, but it may also help to take some magnesium supplements to help activate the vitamin D. 

Depending on the intensity of your deficiency, your doctor may also recommend strong vitamin D injections. Aside from that, consider adjusting your regular diet to include more vitamin D-rich food, like fatty fish, fortified milk, juices, cereals, yogurt, beef liver, and egg yolks.

Maximize Your Vitamin D Absorption

One of the reasons vitamin D deficiencies are so common is that there are not many foods high in Vitamin D, so even a balanced diet may not be enough to keep your body’s vitamin D at optimal levels. Fortunately, there are other ways to boost Vitamin D. The most straightforward way is to use a natural source everyone has access to—The Sun. As our skin is exposed to the suns rays, our body produce vitamin D on its own. Just be sure to wear sunscreen!

As more and more Americans are working indoors, it’s more difficult than ever to get enough sunlight each day. That’s where we come in. Prime IV Hydration & Wellness offers numerous IV drips, hydration therapies, and injections specifically formulated to improve your health and wellness- including multiple drips with an impressive natural vitamin D boost. Taking vitamins and nutrients through an IV puts them directly into your system and bypasses the less efficient absorption of the stomach, providing the maximum benefit possible. Vitamin D can only offered an injection due to being oil soluble and unable to put in an IV only in an intramuscular injection.

If you’d like help addressing your issues with vitamin D deficiency, please don’t hesitate to contact us today and consider exploring our website to find one of our locations near you! We have several facilities located throughout the United States, with new locations opening soon to help us serve a larger community of eager patients.

Are you ready to discover the seemingly endless benefits that Prime IV Hydration & Wellness can offer you this year? Please consider reaching out to our experts today to learn how our specialized IV therapy can help alleviate symptoms from migraines and fatigue to altitude sickness, seasonal allergies, and even athletic injuries!