Vitamin D deficiency in adults can increase the risk of many common illnesses, including multiple sclerosis, diabetes 1 and 2, and several different forms of cancer. There are many ways to naturally boost the levels of Vitamin D in your system, including plenty of exposure to natural sunlight. However, sometimes vitamin D supplementation may be required in order to keep your levels within the normal range.
Deficiency risk is not uncommon, especially for those living in areas farther away from the equator. Though it is believed that race, age and gender play a role, anyone is essentially at risk.
Although plenty of exposure to the UV rays in sunlight is one of the most natural ways to receive your daily dose of vitamin D, this is not always possible. Older generations should especially take extra precautions because of the slower absorption through their skin, and therefore a higher risk of deficiency.
One of the easiest ways to prevent deficiency is to take vitamin D supplements. These can be prescribed by a doctor, and they can also be found for a reasonable price over the counter. Depending on your age, the requirements for supplement dosage are going to be slightly different.
Infants too may benefit from vitamin D supplementation as it has been found that they do not get adequate amounts through the mother's milk. For those that are bottle fed, governments have already mandated the supplement be added to the formula to ensure that there are no deficiencies.
Older children and adolescents typically receive their recommended daily dose of this vitamin through the foods that they eat and the time that they spend in the sun. For those that do not, however, there are supplements that are designed especially for them that are age appropriate.
Regardless of your age, however, vitamin D supplementation may help minimize your future risk of diseases such as osteoporosis; breast, colon and prostate cancers. It can even help prevent or help treat diabetes in many patients. Several of the diseases that you are put at risk for deficiency of this vitamin have hereditary ties.
Although it is important to make sure that you are receiving enough vitamin D in order to lower your risks of certain illnesses, it is also important to make sure that you are not getting too much. Too much of the vitamin van cause symptoms such as anorexia and heart arrhythmia, so the dosage that you are required to take should be followed carefully. Consulting a healthcare professional is always recommended.