There have been studies reported recently lately that link vitamin D to better outcomes from coronavirus. Though only time and further study will be able to tell if that is truly the case, it is a fact that Vitamin D is a key vitamin in keeping your immune system strong. Yet, it’s estimated that almost 35 percent of Americans are vitamin D deficient. How can you tell if you might be vitamin D deficient? Dr. Nicholas L. Pantaleo, family medicine at Westmed Medical Group tells us all you need to know about Vitamin D.
What are the Symptoms of Vitamin D Deficiency?
Most often the symptoms of vitamin D deficiency are subtle and not specific, but some signs can include: fatigue, frequently getting sick or infected, bone pain, muscle pain, lower back aches, depression and other mood changes like irritability.
How do I get Diagnosed with Vitamin D Deficiency?
If you think you may have a vitamin D deficiency, make an appointment with your doctor and tell them your symptoms. They will likely order a blood test to check your vitamin D levels. Keep in mind that some symptoms overlap with other vitamin deficiencies, so your doctor may also check your iron and your zinc levels too.
How can I avoid low levels of Vitamin D?
The best way to avoid low levels of vitamin D is to get outside. We make the most of our vitamin D through exposure to sunlight. About 15 to 20 minutes a day three days a week, should be a good starting point.
With the colder weather arriving, you can also consider to eat foods with vitamin D in them such as dairy, seafood and eggs. In addition, supplements can help, but it’s best to consult with your doctor before you begin using a supplement to ensure you are taking the correct dose and that it will not interfere with any other medications you may be taking.