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In the News Vitamin D Deficiency – Part I

Written by Lisa Jillanza

It’s summertime and the primary source of vitamin D can be found if you step outside and look up into the sky – the sun! The sun helps synthesize vitamin D in the skin promoting the growth of strong bones and cognitive health.

As beneficial as vitamin D can be to our bodies, a lack of vitamin D can lead to many health issues.

Symptoms of vitamin D deficiency include bone pain, muscle weakness, fatigue and mood changes. People with darker skin, those with certain underlying health conditions or who are taking medications, and those who live far away from the Equator, may be more prone to having low vitamin D.

Not getting enough vitamin D may raise your risk for other diseases and conditions – some of them life threatening.

Here are some potential complications linked to vitamin D deficiency.


Respiratory Illness – Research shows that vitamin D may help protect people from respiratory illness. One study examined the impact of vitamin D on respiratory infections including pneumonia, bronchitis, and sinusitis. Researchers found that people who took vitamin D were 12 percent less likely to develop respiratory illness compared with people who did not take the vitamin. 

Osteoperosis - One of vitamin D’s primary roles is to maintain bone health.  Low levels of vitamin D lead to low bone calcium stores, increasing the risk of fractures. A vitamin D deficiency may put people at risk for osteoporosis, which happens when new bone doesn’t generate at the same pace as the loss of old bone. Low vitamin D levels decrease calcium absorption, and calcium absorption is important for bone health.

(Continued in Part II…)