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Role Of Vitamin D For The Skin

Role Of Vitamin D For The Skin

You’ve possibly been told very often that vitamins and minerals are essential for your body. That’s true. While there are a variety of vitamins that are essential, there’s Vitamin D that we would like to talk about in particular.

Vitamin D has many benefits, but is important for your skin. It plays a vital role in skin protection and rejuvenation. Now, it is to be understood that Vitamin D has two forms.

  • Vitamin D2 ( ergocalciferol)
  • Vitamin D3 ( cholecalciferol)

Where does most of your vitamin D come from?

Vitamin D has many sources and understanding where you get it from is important.

  • Vitamin D2: The primary source of Vitamin D2 lies in plants, fortified foods, cereals, dairy products, fish liver oil and fatty fish
  • Vitamin D3: Your body makes its own Vitamin D3 as your epidermis is rich in 7-dehydrocholesterol, which is converted to vitamin D3 on exposure to sunlight (290-320mm) by photolysis.

Sources of Vitamin D

Compounds of vitamin D are sterol derivatives 1alpha 25(OH)2 D3 act as a steroid hormone calcitriol is its active form.

Functions of Vitamin D:

Now, you would know that Vitamin D is important for your body, but here’s some help in understanding how exactly it benefits you.

  • Role in normal insulin secretion
  • Calcitriol increases  calcium absorption from intestine
  • Role in differentiation of normal dermal fibroblasts
  • Calcium & Vitamin D, regulate keratinocyte differentiation
  • Calcitriol  inhabits T-lymphocyte mitogenesis & suppress IL-2 production, thus helping in inflammatory process

USES:

Vitamin D is critical in helping take care of several skin conditions like:

  • Psoriasis
  • Wound heavily
  • Vitiligo
  • Inflammatory diseases

Vitamin D Uses

Though not the cause Vitamin D found in association or as a finding in various skin disorders like:

  • Psoriasis, PA, Acne, ichthyosis, atopic dermatitis, autoimmune diseases (Rheumatic arthritis)
  • Chemotherapy induced hair loss
  • Systemic sclerosis
  • Skin rejuvenation
  • Neurofibromatosis
  • Even in skin cancer

What happens if your body does not have enough vitamin D?

Because Vitamin D plays a big role in keeping you healthy, a deficiency would certainly hamper your health. So, what could be causing a lack of it?

Causes of Vitamin D deficiency:

  • Decreased conversion of vitamin D3 to its active form in skin
  • Infants who survive on breast milk alone
  • Poor dietary intake
  • Inadequate sun exposure
  • Old age
  • High cereal diet
  • Malabsorption

Vitamin D Deficiency Causes

If you have Vitamin D deficiency, your body will find ways of letting you know. So, what are those ways?

Skin signs which may help in identifying Vitamin D deficiencies:

  • Excess Sweating: one of the first signs of Vitamin D deficiency
  • Eczema
  • Day time sleepiness
  • Early wrinkles.
  • Major deficiencies presents as tetany and rickets in children and osteomalacia in adults.

Tips to prevent vitamin D deficiency

  • Spend 20-30 min in sunlight, but exposure should be in the early hours of the day, not in hot sun
  • Avoid tanning
  • Sunscreen to be used on exposure to hot sun
  • Foods rich in vitamin D: fatty fish, dairy products ,Fortified foods
  • Vitamin D oral supplements

Prevention of Vitamin D Deficiency

Too much of Vitamin D isn’t good

Even though Vitamin D is a boon, in excess is definitely harmful. Excess intake of Vitamin D causes Hypervitaminosis –D

Vitamin D intoxication, also called hypervitaminosis D, is a rare but potentially serious condition that occurs when you have excessive amounts of vitamin D in your body.

Vitamin D toxicity is usually caused by mega doses of vitamin D supplements for treatment of arthritis, allergies, TB etc., not by diet or sun exposure. That’s because your body regulates the amount of vitamin D produced by sun exposure, and even fortified foods don’t contain large amounts of vitamin D.

The main consequence of vitamin D toxicity is a buildup of calcium in your blood, which can cause nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, Pruritus, irritability, fatigue, anorexia, conjunctivitis and Vascular calcification. Symptoms might progress to bone pain and kidney problems, such as the formation of calcium stones.

Treatment includes stopping vitamin D intake and restricting dietary calcium. Your doctor might also prescribe intravenous fluids and medications, such as corticosteroids.

With all these pointers about Vitamin D, we hope you keep healthy, intake sufficient amounts of it and avoid an overload!

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