Are you having trouble losing weight, waking up achy and/or having more aches during the day than normal, feeling weaker than usual?
These symptoms sound very familiar to me. The harder I tried to lose weight, the more I gained. I would wake up all achy, had trouble moving, and not feeling as strong as I once was. Working out daily, adding weight training to my routine and all the normal day-to-day stuff was more challenging than it had been.
Even the best of us can run into health challenges. I know what to do and how to care for myself however I was missing one critical element.
Turns out my Vitamin D levels were really low. After doing some research on this, I discovered that the majority of people have low Vitamin D. That can cause some serious health challenges too. That’s not a good thing.
[Read: Are You Vitamin D Deficient?]
What is Vitamin D?
According to the National Institutes of Health,
- Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin that’s naturally found very few foods, is available in supplement form and is produced in our bodies from sun exposure.
- Vitamin D is needed for bone growth, modulation of cell growth, neuromuscular and nerve function, and reduction of inflammation.
- Vitamin D helps to fight infections, reduce hypertension and heart disease and may reduce your risk for many diseases.
Symptoms Of Vitamin D Deficiency
Here is a list of vitamin D deficiency symptoms.
- Being Overweight
- Achy Bones
- Muscle Weakness
- 50 Years Old +
- Cardiovascular Disease
I know, going to see your doctor isn’t fun and may even be scary. However, if any of the above applies to you, then you may want to get your levels tested. Your physician can do this during a routine blood test. The optimal range for Vitamin D is generally between 50 and 70 ng/ml.
[Read: How Is Low Vitamin D Levels Linked To Depression?]
Best Ways To Boost Your Vitamin D Levels
The best food sources with Vitamin D include mostly animal products. Here are some vitamin D foods: salmon, tuna, milk, yogurt and eggs to name a few. Even with those, the levels are usually low. Since I don’t consume these items, I’m sticking with sun exposure and supplements.
Getting your UVB rays through sun can help raise your levels. The UVB rays penetrate your skin (no sunscreen) and converts cutaneous 7-dehydrocholesterol to previtamin D3, which becomes Vitamin D3.
Of course, there are obstacles doing it this way too. First, please note that just being in the sun anytime doesn’t mean you’re getting the UVB rays needed. There are specific times of day, etc. that are best. UVB rays also don’t penetrate through glass so you won’t get it while driving in your car or sitting in your home.
Vitamin D Supplements
I’m also taking a supplement to help get my levels to the optimal range.
There are two forms of Vitamin D supplements: Vitamin D2 and Vitamin D3. I chose to supplement with Vitamin D3, which is closer to what our bodies make naturally.
A Balanced Approach
Finding out what’s going on in your body, especially if you know something’s not right, is so important. Once you have all the facts, you and your doctor can create a plan of action to remedy it.
So now, I take my supplement daily and when the weather is nice and it’s my optimal UVB time, I’ll be spending more time outdoors. I’m already feeling a difference in my body too, which is great!
Keep in mind that there’s no quick fix. You have to put in the work and be patient, these things take time to straighten out. Keep moving forward and before you know it, you’ll start to notice a difference in your body.