Common Deficiency Symptoms
- Aching bones—aches and pains along with fatigue can easily be diagnosed as other conditions, however they are common signs of Vitamin D deficiency. Low Vitamin D actually prevents calcium from being deposited in your bones causing your bones to ache from a lack of their essential nutrient.
- Depression—low levels of Vitamin D have been linked to depression as well as other mental health issues. Likewise, depression is associated with decreased serotonin levels and serotonin rises with exposure to sunlight or other bright light.
- Gut health issues—somewhat of a risk factor and a symptom, an unhealthy gut can compromise your ability to absorb Vitamin D making you deficient. At the same time, an unhealthy gut makes it difficult to reverse your deficiency by other means. Gut conditions such as Crohn’s disease, gluten sensitivity, and inflammatory bowel disease are usual examples.
- Head sweating—excessive sweating from the head is a very common symptom of Vitamin D deficiency. A result of irritation within the neuromuscular system, head sweating is especially noticable in newborns and infants.
Why would you lack Vitamin D?Thanks to the increased use of sun protection; sunscreen, hats, and umbrellas, as well as people staying indoors for longer periods of time, Vitamin D deficiency has become all too prevalent. Nevertheless, scientists found that these certain characteristics may increase your risk of developing a deficiency:
- More skin pigmentation Individuals that naturally carry more melanin in their skin or those who tan often are at a greater risk of becoming Vitamin D deficient. UV rays from the sun have a harder time penetrating darker skin. Therefore, if you have darker skin you may need to expose yourself to direct sunlight as much as 10 times longer to produce the same amount of Vitamin D as someone with pale skin.
- 50 years of age or older Age is also an important factor in Vitamin D production, as skin in older individuals cannot make as much Vitamin D as skin in younger individuals. Meanwhile, as you age your kidneys lose some of their Vitamin D-converting efficiency. This means that even the Vitamin D you produce is not all converted into a form that your body can use.
- Overweight Being overweight, obese, or just having a higher muscle mass also challenges the amount of Vitamin D available to your body. The reason for this is that Vitamin D is a fat-soluble Vitamin meaning it must enter the body through fat. So, overweight individuals with more body fat require extra Vitamin D to maintain an optimal level and avoid deficiency.