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Vitamin D: the "sunshine vitamin"

Vitamin D Sunshine choozo

If you shun the sun, suffer from milk allergies or adhere to a strict vegan diet, you may be at risk for vitamin D deficiency. Known as the "sunshine vitamin", vitamin D is produced by the body in response to skin being exposed to sunlight. It also occurs naturally in a few foods -- including some fish, fish liver oils, and egg yolks -- and in fortified dairy and grain products.

Vitamin D is essential for strong bones because it helps the body use calcium from the diet. Traditionally, vitamin D deficiency has been associated with rickets, a disease in which the bone tissue doesn't properly mineralize, leading to soft bones and skeletal deformities. But increasingly, research is revealing the importance of vitamin D in protecting against a host of health problems. ( Check Sunvit )

Symptoms and Health Risks of Vitamin D Deficiency

Symptoms of bone pain and muscle weakness can mean you have a vitamin D deficiency. However, for many people, the symptoms are subtle. Yet, even without symptoms, too little vitamin D can pose health risks. Low blood levels of the vitamin have been associated with the following: Increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease:

- Cognitive impairment in older adults
- Severe asthma in children
- Cancer
- Research suggests that vitamin D could play a
role in the prevention and treatment of a number
of different conditions, including type1 and type 2
diabetes, hypertension, glucose intolerance,
and multiple sclerosis.

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