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5 benefits of vitamin D

5 benefits of Vitamin D

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It might be best known for its bone-building ability, but vitamin D has a lot more to offer your health and wellbeing than that. Here’s a handful of reasons why it’s important to keep your levels topped up.

Often called the sunshine vitamin due to the way the body manufactures it when the skin is exposed to sunlight, vitamin D is one of the 13 vitamins that are important for our health and wellbeing.

There are actually two main forms of vitamin D – D2 and D3 – and you might be surprised by the varied role they play. So, what does vitamin D do for the body? Here are five reasons why vitamin D is so good for you.

1. It helps to maintain bone health. Due to the relationship between calcium and vitamin D, with vitamin D helping the body absorb calcium from foods or supplements, vitamin D plays a vital role in helping to keep bones strong. In a nutshell, without enough vitamin D, the body doesn’t form sufficient ‘active vitamin D’, which is a hormone called calcitriol. This leads to insufficient calcium absorption, which forces the body to draw on its calcium stores in the skeleton, weakening existing bone and preventing strong, new bone from developing.

2. It’s good for your muscles.Vitamin D doesn’t just help to maintain bone health – it’s essential for muscle health, too. One explanation is the fact that, because muscles contain specific receptors for the vitamin, vitamin D plays a crucial role in muscle regeneration. As a result, symptoms of vitamin D deficiency can include muscle weakness, aches and even cramps, while taking a vitamin D supplement may help to maintain muscle health, function and strength.

3. It supports immune health. Like zinc and vitamin C, vitamin D has a role to play in regulating and supporting the immune system. As well as contributing to the production of germ-fighting proteins, vitamin D also dampens down the damaging and counter-productive inflammatory response of some immune-system cells.

4. It helps to maintain general health and wellbeing. As one of the many vitamins that the body needs to stay healthy, research into how vitamin D might affect and even protect against a wide range of health conditions is ongoing. And thanks to how it supports the immune system, one study has already shown that adults who have low vitamin D levels are more likely to report having had a cough or a cold recently.

5. It can help improve your mood. The results of a study published in early 2021 suggest that there’s a clear link between vitamin D levels and mood. The research found that people who were deficient in the vitamin were more likely to experience low mood than those who had high vitamin D levels, and ‘mood changes’ has been identified as another symptom of vitamin D deficiency. Learning what you can do to help increase your vitamin D levels both effectively and safely, is important.