Vitamin D is an essential part of one’s diets, especially for elderly individuals. It is important to be well informed about vitamin D, given that it plays a crucial role in the proper functioning of the body. A vitamin D deficiency is usually an indicator of poor health. In order to effectively deal with a vitamin D deficiency, you need to know about its causes and symptoms, as well as any preventive measures you can take.
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Causes of Vitamin D deficiency in seniors:
- Lack of exposure to vitamin D: People are normally exposed to vitamin D through natural exposure to the sun’s rays – one of the most significant sources of vitamin D. So, if you are an elderly person, or you are caring for one, then you need to ensure that there is adequate exposure to sunlight; as lack of consistent and sufficient exposure to sunlight, leads to a vitamin D deficiency.
- Reduced consumption of vitamins and supplements: Many elderly individuals do not have the right information at hand regarding the consumption of the vitamins to keep their bodies strong in the later stages of life. This lack of awareness leads to reduced consumption of Vitamin D, and its supplements, on a regular basis. Also, following a purely vegan diet can lead to low vitamin D levels among the elderly.
- Obesity: Obesity is also one of the significant causes of low vitamin D. This is because vitamin D is extracted from the blood by fat cells. This leaves a lower amount of vitamin D for circulation in the body. Vitamin D deficiency fatigue is also quite common in obese individuals.
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Signs of Vitamin D deficiency:
- High blood pressure: Vitamin D deficiency affects healthy blood pressure levels and tweaks it to higher levels
- Sleepiness: Do you feel the urge to sleep during the daytime or for extended hours? Then, there is a high probability that you are suffering from vitamin D deficiency.
- Lack of energy: Do you feel low throughout the day? This can be due to low vitamin D levels in the body. This is one of the notable vitamin D deficiency symptoms in men. So, you need to take this seriously and avoid ignoring it if you are feeling the same since the last few months.
- Feeling of depression: Depression is one of the most common signs of vitamin D deficiency. A person suffering from vitamin D deficiency usually feels demotivated and irritable most of the time.
- Moodiness: A person gets mood swings due to low vitamin D levels. So, if you feel that you’ve been having one too many mood swings lately, then you need to check if you have a vitamin D deficiency.
The recommended amount of vitamin D for seniors is 800 to 1000 IU per day. This is because seniors are highly susceptible to the consequences of vitamin D deficiency. Therefore, they need to tackle this systematically to avoid any deficiencies. Also, the levels are increased in elderly individuals, so that you can compensate for the lack of the other sources of vitamin D.
Measures to take to prevent vitamin D deficiency:
- Vitamin D deficiency can be prevented with regular exposure to sunlight especially the early morning sunlight. Start walking in the sunshine in the morning for the best results.
- Get your vitamin levels tested by your physician. This will let you know the present levels of the vitamins in your body. In this way, you can monitor and improve the consumption of vitamin D in the form of supplements on a regular basis.
- Ensure that your weight is within the normal range as per your age. You will not only improve your vitamin D levels but also feel fresh and energized throughout the day.
Follow all the aforementioned pointers, to completely safeguard yourself or any elderly people you know from a vitamin D deficiency.
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