Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that plays many roles in helping the body to function properly. Vitamin D is essential to helping your body absorb calcium which ensures strong bone growth.1
Vitamin D can be absorbed through your skin from sunlight or from foods like egg yolks, saltwater fish and liver. You can also take vitamin D supplements or eat foods enriched with vitamin D if your lifestyle and diet aren’t providing sufficient levels of vitamin D.2
Vitamin D Uses and Health Benefits
Having sufficient levels of vitamin D in your body can contribute to many health benefits. Some of the vitamin D benefits include:1
- Aids in calcium absorption for better bone strength
- Prevents diseases such as osteoporosis and other bone disorders
- Reduce the risk of high blood pressure
- Promotes healthy cell growth which can help lower the risk of developing colon, breast, prostate, pancreas and skin cancers
- Improves and regulates immune system function 3
Known to have many uses, vitamin D for depression is one of the most well-known. Known as the sunshine vitamin, vitamin D helps to improve mood and energy levels. There is also thought to be a connection between a vitamin D deficiency and obesity, therefore you can also take vitamin D for weight loss.
Additionally, vitamin D has excellent skin benefits and so taking vitamin D for acne is a great way to treat this persistent skin condition.
Here are some other uses for vitamin D:
- Lupus - Vitamin D is an excellent vitamin for helping to improve the immune system. Getting sufficient levels of vitamin D may help to treat and reduce the chances of autoimmune diseases like lupus.
- Psoriasis - Absorbing vitamin D through skin exposure to sunlight can help improve skin conditions including healing symptoms of psoriasis.
- Hypertension (High Blood Pressure) - By getting enough vitamin D, it can help lower the risk of developing hypertension in those who are at greater risk of high blood pressure.
- Multiple Sclerosis - Having high enough levels of vitamin D can help to reduce the risk of developing multiple sclerosis (MS) in both men and women.
- Tuberculosis - Vitamin D supplements can help improve immune system function and help to fight off tuberculosis (TB) infection and assist in recovery.
- Breast Cancer - Getting enough vitamin D can help to lower the risk of developing breast cancer as well as increase the chances of breast cancer survival.
Vitamin D Side Effects and Precautions
Vitamin D is a safe supplement for most people to take up to 10,000 IU daily. However, vitamin D side effects can arise if obtaining vitamin D through direct exposure to sunlight. Be sure to limit the amount of time spent in the sun to healthy levels.4
If you are taken too much vitamin D you are at risk of vitamin D toxicity which may cause calcium levels to rise leading to potential heart damage from calcification.5
Consult your doctor if you are planning on significantly increasing your vitamin D supplement levels.