Vitamin D is vital for the bones, as it aids the body to absorb and use calcium from the diet.
The deficiency of this vitamin has been traditionally linked to rickets, which is a disease in which the bone tissue does not properly mineralize, creating soft bones and skeletal deformities.
However, numerous studies have shown that this vitamin is also essential in the prevention of various health issues.
The vitamin D deficiency is often manifested by bone pain and muscle weakness. The symptoms of this deficiency can sometimes be subtle, but it is a fact that the lack of vitamin D in the body poses numerous health risks.
The following eight diseases have been scientifically associated with the chronic deficiency of this vitamin:
The rates of influenza are the highest during the winter when the exposure to the ultraviolet B rays is reduced and the sun is at the lowest tilt. Research has shown that vitamin D strengthens the immune system, and maintaining optimal vitamin D levels successfully prevents colds and flu.
A recent Canadian study has found a link between the deficiency of this vitamin and rheumatoid arthritis. Actually, researchers have found that people with the lowest blood levels of 25(OH)D were found to be up to five times more prone to rheumatoid arthritis-related diseases than others.
Therefore, you should definitely check your vitamin D levels if you suffer from rheumatoid arthritis.
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
Numerous studies conducted in India, Europe, and the United States have found a relation between the reduced levels of vitamin D and the increased rates of Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and other forms of IBD.
Research has shown that the rates of IBD are higher in areas with limited sunlight exposure, and vice versa.
Recent studies have shown that the lack of vitamin D is a major factor in the prevalence of asthma. Particularly in children, this vitamin can reduce the severity and prevalence of the symptoms of asthma, and may even alleviate the inflammation responsible for restricting airways and causing breathing issues.
All cancer types, including cervical, gastric, ovarian, renal, breast, prostate, colorectal, esophageal, gastric, pancreatic, or renal, have been found to be more prominent in the case of low vitamin D levels.
On the other hand, the high levels of this vitamin make the person less susceptible to cancer.