Can Medications Cause A Vitamin D Deficiency
Yes. Vitamin D levels can be lowered by certain medications. These include:
- Cholesterol-lowering drugs .
- Seizure-control drugs .
- A tuberculosis drug .
- A weight-loss drug .
Always tell your doctor about the drugs you take and any vitamin D supplements or other supplements or herbs/alternative health products that you take.
Why You Need Vitamin D3
A deficiency of vitamin D can have serious consequences in the body. Vitamin D is vital for these reasons:
1. Bone Health
Doctors discovered vitamin D when they were studying rickets, a children’s bone disorder. Today rickets is rare, but vitamin D is still needed for bone health. It’s especially important for women past menopause, who are at risk of osteoporosis. Vitamin D is also used to treat a more serious bone condition called osteomalacia . Vitamin D allows the body to absorb calcium. Without vitamin D, the body uses only a small percentage of the calcium in food.
2. Anti-Cancer Properties
Higher levels of vitamin D in the blood are associated with lower levels of some cancers, including colorectal,prostate, and pancreatic. In animal studies, vitamin D was associated with fewer tumors and slower growth of tumors. Clinical trials in humans suggest that vitamin D may not prevent cancer but may slow its progress.
3. Brain Health
Low levels of vitamin D may be a risk factor for various forms of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease. Animal studies and cell studies have shown a connection, but the results of clinical trials have been mixed. Further research is needed.
Why Is Vitamin D Important
This at-home vitamin D blood test lets you test for vitamin D deficiency or toxicity in the comfort of your own home with just a simple finger prick. But why does vitamin D matter in the first place?
Vitamin D plays a vital role in the bodyâs ability to regulate the absorption and levels of calcium and phosphorus. It also greatly influences your ability to maintain a healthy bone structure, reduce inflammation, and promote cell growth.
Commonly referred to as the âsunshine vitamin,â vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin and is stored in the fatty tissues of the body, which is then released when not in direct sunlight. We typically get 50-90% of our vitamin D from the sunlight itself, with the remainder coming from our diet, where it is mostly found within fatty fish , egg yolks, and fortified dairy products.
Lack of vitamin D or severe vitamin D deficiency is also believed to cause an increased risk of serious illnesses like:
- Cardiovascular Disease
- Muscle Weakness or Pain
Your results will contain your personal level of vitamin D and whether it is low, normal, or high as compared to someone who shares a similar demographic profile as you .
If your results indicate that you may have vitamin D insufficiency, we can provide guidance and general recommendations to help improve low vitamin D levels. We might also suggest other lifestyle changes that are often helpful in getting your bodyâs levels within the recommended range.
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Vitamin D And Bone Health
Vitamin D helps the body to absorb calcium which bones need for strength. Without vitamin D, your body will be unable to absorb the key nutrients bones need from the food you eat and this increases your risk of developing osteoporosis.
Osteoporosis is a debilitating disease which weakens bones, so they are fragile and more likely to break. It can take some time to develop but can result in breakages, particularly the wrist and hips. Women of menopausal age are at a greater risk of osteoporosis as their oestrogen levels fall. Therefore, vitamin D is vital for women of this age to prevent fractures and weakened bones. The nutrient can also boost immunity, mood and energy during the menopause, too!
The important role of vitamin D in bone healthy means it is also vital for anyone who participates in regular exercise because it can prevent the development of stress fractures. However, it also has muscular benefits and increases muscle protein synthesis and increased vitamin D levels are associated with greater strength and power.
Can You Test Your Vitamin D Levels At Home
Thanks to modern technology, going to the GP isnt your only option if you want to test your vitamin D levels, you can now do a vitamin D test at home. Well explain the benefits of both options below. Home vitamin D diagnostic kit vs a blood test from your Doctor.
Its only natural at this point to ask why you would want to test your vitamin D levels at home when you can go and get one free from your GP?
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Write Down Your Personal Details
Before you attempt to prick your finger, fill in your personal details on the collection device . Also, dont forget to write the sample date and time. At the same time, you can also fill in a consent form where you note down the same details, but also add your physical address and email address. This is important as you get your results and recommendations back via email. Make sure you write clearly!
Why Do I Need A Vitamin D Test
Your doctor may recommend that you take a vitamin D test if they see vitamin D deficiency symptoms in your body. It may also be recommended if you have a higher risk of developing low vitamin D symptoms due to certain conditions. These include:
- Bone weakness, bone malformation, and bone softness in adults which is known as osteomalacia
- Fractures, especially if you are prone to breaking your bones often
- Osteoporosis or other bone disorders, which is prevalent in women after menopause
- Heart diseases and stroke risk in family history
- Pain in bones and joints
- Muscle pain
Since vitamin D deficiency symptoms in adults are not always obvious or evident, you should check with a general physician in Bengaluru about any vitamin D deficiency symptoms you may present to start low vitamin D treatment if required. Your doctor may request you to get a vitamin D test in Bengaluru to confirm the same.
Where To Get More Vitamin D
Now that you realize how important Vitamin D can be, its time to figure out where it comes from. There are two forms of Vitamin D that are important for nutrition. These are Vitamin D2 and Vitamin D3.
One of the primary sources of these life-giving nutrients is sunlight. Thats right, simply standing in the sun can help your body create Vitamin D. It is fat-soluble, so it is stored within the bodys fatty tissues. When youre not in direct sunlight, your body knows to release the vitamin D to keep you healthy and happy.
Beyond sunlight, there is another key area where people can build Vitamin D food! Your diet can be very important. For the best results, try eating D2 and D3 rich foods, such as fatty fish, dairy and eggs!
Vitamin D And Calcium For Bone Health In Postmenopausal Women And Older Men
Post-menopausal women and older men have traditionally been recommended 800 IU/day of vitamin D due to their increased risk of osteoporosis and osteoporotic fractures. This recommendation has been questioned. A recent meta-analysis reported no effect on the risk of fractures or falls and bone mineral density with vitamin D supplementation in community-dwelling women age 65 years or older.18 The US Preventative Services Task Force concluded that the current evidence is inconclusive to assess the benefits and harms of supplementation with vitamin D alone or in combination with calcium for the primary prevention of factures in community-dwelling postmenopausal women and asymptomatic men.19However, considering the strengths and limitations of the analyses, Osteoporosis Canada maintains that individuals with osteoporosis or with risk factors for fractures receive adequate vitamin D, recommended at 800-2,000 IU/day.20,21
- For specific recommendations for patients at risk of osteoporosis, see the associated guideline at BCGuidelines.ca: Osteoporosis Diagnosis, Treatment and Fracture Prevention.
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Vitamin D And Immune Health
While you cannot boost your immune system, you can certainly support it with proper nutrition and supplementation when necessary, Shaw says. Given the research coming out surrounding COVID-19 and vitamin D levels, I would definitely encourage the public to speak with their healthcare team to figure out the supplement level that is right for them.”
To clarify, we don’t want to boost immunity, Majumdar says, explaining an optimally-functioning immune system is what people need. Boosting implies that the immune system is on overdrive, or compensating for an outside invader.
, a professor of molecular endocrinology at the University of Birmingham, has studied vitamin D and the immune system. He tells Verywell that he doesnt think at-home tests are worth the effort unless you are severely deficient and are at risk of bone disease.
A key point here is that we do not know what an optimal levels of vitamin D is for combatting COVID-19, Hewison tells Verywell.
Even if you have a measurement taken, all that a clinician can tell you is whether you are deficient or not.
We dont know what level of vitamin D enhances your immune function, so I dont think that it is worth bothering with assays, he says. I would just suggest taking a daily supplement. I take 2,000 IU/day but this is purely my preference. Assume that you are likely to have low vitamin D levels during the winter and early spring and simply take a supplement.
Vitamin D Tests: When You Need Them And When You Dont
Many people dont have enough vitamin D in their bodies. Low vitamin D increases the risk of broken bones. It may also contribute to other health problems. Thats why health care providers often order a blood test to measure vitamin D.
But many people do not need the test. Heres why:
A test usually does not improve treatment.
Many people have low levels of vitamin D, but few have seriously low levels. Most of us dont need a vitamin D test. We just need to make simple changes so we get enough vitamin D. We need to get a little more sun and follow the other advice found below.
Even if you are at risk for other diseases, like diabetes and heart disease, a vitamin D test isnt usually helpful. The test results are unlikely to change the advice from your health care provider. It is much more important for you to make lifestyle changes firstto stop smoking, aim for a healthy weight and be physically active. And, like most other Canadians, you should try to get enough vitamin D from sun and foods. And talk to your health care provider about supplements.
Extra tests lead to extra treatments.
Getting tests that you dont need often leads to treatments you dont need, or treatments that can even be harmful. For example, if you take too much vitamin D, it can damage your kidneys and other organs.
When should you have a vitamin D test?
Talk to your health care provider about your risks. Here are some conditions where you might need a Vitamin D test:
How can you get enough vitamin D?
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How To Identify Deficiencies
Identifyingdeficiencies is essential to avoid health risks and medical issues. Making sure you are providing your body with the vital nutrients it needs to keep you healthy. Ensuring your nutrients levels are at their optimal levels is easy with at home Health Test Kits.
With BetterYou, you can easily check whether you are at risk of deficiencies with:
Using these tests can identify your risk of deficiency and in turn decrease your risk of health conditions relating to lack of vital vitamins and minerals. Checking your likelihood of developing a deficiency is important to prevent unwanted health issues and help you increase your nutrient intake if necessary.
How Often Should I Test My Vitamin D Levels
If you have a vitamin D deficiency, testing your levels after beginning treatment may help you and your healthcare professional determine if the plan is working or if it should be adjusted.
Otherwise, if your vitamin D levels typically fall within the recommended range, testing them twice a year in the spring and again in the fall can alert you to any changes and help ensure they continue to stay within a healthy range.
There isnt much research available on the benefits of screening for vitamin D deficiency, so its best to speak with your healthcare professional first before trying an at-home test.
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This Is Why Ive Dubbed Vitamin D The Period Vitamin
It is clearly connected to our reproductive health and there are distinct conditions that seem to be related to its deficiency. PCOS, Infertility and PMS are epidemic in the modern world. A coincidence? Probably not. And guys, you are affected too:
In men, vitamin D is essential for the healthy development of sperm and it helps maintain semen quality and sperm count. Vitamin D also increases testosterone levels, which boosts libido.
Vitamin D is not really a fat-soluble vitamin but rather a pre-hormone. The reason for this is because vitamin D acts more like a hormone in the body it is the only vitamin that the body can manufacture.
Common Vitamin And Mineral Result Ranges
Iron ranges There are several tests to check your iron levels. The ideal ranges for each test are:
- serum ferritin 13-150 ng/l for women and 30-400 ng/l for men
- haemoglobin 120-160 g/L for women and 130-170 g/L for men
- transferrin saturation 20-55% for both women and men
- total iron-binding capacity 45-72 umol/L for both women and men
- unsaturated iron-binding capacity 24.2-70.1 umol/L for women and 22.3-61.7 umol/L for men
Vitamin D ranges A 25-hydroxy vitamin D test is the best way to measure your vitamin D levels. Vitamin D reference range:
- between 50-175 nmol/L is normal
- between 75-100 nmol/L is optimal
Vitamin B12 ranges An active B12 test is the best way to measure your levels this measures the amount of vitamin B12 thats available for your body to use. You can also do a total B12. Vitamin B12 reference ranges:
- active B12 between 37.5- 188 pmol/L is normal
- total B12 between 300- 569 pmol/L is normal
- between 8.83-60.8 nmol/L is normal
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Everlywell Vitamin D And Inflammation Test
Everlywell offers a test that looks for vitamin D levels and a measure of c-reactive protein , called hs-CRP. The liver makes CRP when there is inflammation in the body.
This finger prick test allows a person to easily collect their sample and send it off to a lab for testing. Independent, board-certified doctors will review the results and explain them in easy-to-understand terms. The company then sends the results to a persons online account, which they access via a secure login.
The test costs around $100, but if a person becomes an Everlywell member, the price lowers to around $25.
LetsGetChecked offers a less extensive test for vitamin deficiencies with their Essential Vitamin Test. The test checks the blood for deficiencies of three vitamins, including:
- vitamin D
- vitamin B12
- vitamin E
Once a person receives the test, they should register it on the LetsGetChecked website and follow all instructions. The home test involves a finger-prick blood sample collection that an individual will send to a lab the same day. Once received, the companys team of doctors will review the test, and the lab will send results to the person within a few days.
Individuals can order the test from the LetsGetChecked website for around $110.
Where To Get A Vitamin And Mineral Deficiency Test
NHS vitamin and mineral tests The NHS offers blood tests that can be done at your GPs or a local hospital. A trained nurse or doctor will take your blood, usually a venous sample.
Home vitamin and mineral tests Its possible to order home vitamin and mineral test kits online and do it yourself. For this test, youll use a lancet to collect a finger-prick blood sample. Your results will be reviewed by a GP and are available for you to view online.
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People Who Should Be Tested
The following should be tested for vitamin D deficiency:
- Individuals who receive therapy to prevent or treat osteoporosis
- Elderly people, especially those with minimal exposure to sunlight
- Patients with signs and symptoms of hypocalcemia or hypercalcemia
- Children and adults with suspected rickets and osteomalacia, respectively
- Patients receiving vitamin D therapy who do not demonstrate clinical improvement
What Are The Best Treatments Or Supplements For Low Vitamin D
We supply both treatments and supplements for low vitamin D:
- Colecalciferol 1,000 IU is a low dose supplement suitable for people with insufficient levels of vitamin D or those with deficient levels who have already had a high dose booster treatment
- Colecalciferol 10,000 IU is high dose booster treatment suitable for people who have been diagnosed with vitamin D deficiency to help quickly improve Vitamin D levels
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Vitamin C Deficiency: Signs Causes & How To Increase Intake
Spotting vitamin C deficiency is important to maintaining a healthy lifestyle and avoiding the symptoms that come with deficiency. Your body needs vitamins and minerals to function normally, and one of these is vitamin C. Vitamin C deficiency can cause dry skin that easily bruises and more if left unresolved. That’s why its important to make sure youre getting enough of this essential vitamin so health problems from not getting enough vitamin C dont occur. Look to remedy the unwanted signs of vitamin C deficiency with supplements and eating sources of vitamin C.