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How To Tell If You Have A Vitamin Deficiency

When To Take A Supplement

How Do You Know If You Have Vitamin D Deficiency

Most people can get the nutrients they need from diet alone. So if you dont have a nutrient deficiency, you shouldnt take a supplement just for the sake of it. Synthetic nutrients dont always match up to those found naturally in foods.

A good approach is to monitor your vitamin and mineral levels with a blood test. If youre low in a certain nutrient, you can up your intake of foods rich in these nutrients. However, supplements are definitely necessary in some cases.

Vitamin D supplements During autumn and winter, Public Health England advises that everyone should consider taking a 10 mcg daily vitamin D supplement from October to March. And if youre more at-risk, they recommend taking them year-round.

If youre someone who doesnt get much sunlight during the summer months, wear sunscreen top to toe, or have darker skin, then its recommended that you take a supplement all year.

Vitamin B12 supplements If youre a vegan or vegetarian then youre more at risk of vitamin B12 deficiency. If a blood test shows that youre deficient or if you follow a strict vegan diet then its recommended that you take a supplement.

A cyanocobalamin supplement is a good choice as its a form that your body can easily use. Its also possible to get a vitamin B12 injection this is especially useful if your deficiency is caused by absorption issues in your stomach. The form of hydroxocobalamin can be given every three months.

What Causes A Vitamin D Deficiency

Limited exposure to the sun

You may look out your window and see the sun shining and think that you are safe from this deficiency, but that is not always the case. Even in sunny climates, there is an increased prevalence of vitamin D deficiency. We have all heard about the dangers of skin cancer and the need for sunscreen to protect us from this disease. This knowledge and the preventive actions we take have significantly decreased our vitamin D levels. Sunscreen protects so well against UV-B rays that an SPF of 30 decreases vitamin D synthesis in the skin by more than 95%. On top of this, we tend to spend more time indoors. One study found that it took Caucasians exposure of more than 30% of their body every day in the summer to make the optimal amounts of vitamin D. Most adults work indoors and wear more clothing during the workweek, which leaves only about 10%-15% of their body exposed to UV for short periods, so they cannot meet their vitamin D needs through the sun alone. Even if you do have some exposure to the sun, the total amount of vitamin D you can produce is affected by the season, time of day, ozone amount, latitude, and the number of clouds in the sky.

How Is Vitamin Deficiency Diagnosed

Your doctor may suspect vitamin deficiency based on your symptoms during a routine health checkup or low vitamin levels may show up coincidentally during other routine tests. In either of these cases, your doctor will advise any of these tests to confirm or rule out vitamin deficiency.

  • CBC Test: A complete blood count test is done to assess the levels of vitamins and their deficiency. When there are low vitamin B12, C, and folate levels, your red blood cells will appear underdeveloped and larger than normal. The blood test will show decreased levels of abnormal-looking white blood cells. Generally, this test is done along with a ferritin test to rule out iron deficiency and anaemia, the symptoms of which are similar to a vitamin deficiency. Similarly, you may also be advised an immunity test that will check for the level of your antibodies to intrinsic factor. This is also done to rule out anaemia and other disorders that may have similar symptoms as vitamin deficiency diseases.
  • Comprehensive vitamin panel tests: These tests are designed to test the blood for all the 13 vitamins. Their results help in diagnosing the levels of vitamins and their deficiencies.
  • Antibodies test: This test is done to check for B12 deficiency.
  • Methylmalonic acid test: This test is done to check for the levels of methylmalonic acid. Higher than normal levels of this substance indicates the existence of vitamin B12 deficiency.

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Lacking Vitamin D In Ones Diet

Vitamin D deficiency can be caused by failing to gain sufficient amounts of vitamin D from one’s diet, leading to insufficient levels in the body overall.

The recommended daily intake of vitamin D is:

  • 400 IU for children under one year
  • 600 IU for children, teens and adults up to age 70
  • 800 IU for pregnant people and adults over the age of 71

To increase a personâs chances of meeting the vitamin D target for their age group, healthcare professionals advise everybody to ensure that their diet contains sources of vitamin D â which can be found in certain foods, especially in fatty fish, such as salmon or tuna, and certain dairy products, like milk and cheese.

However, most foods that contain vitamin D do not contain sufficient quantities to meet a personâs daily required intake. For this reason, many traditionally consumed sources of vitamin D are fortified with vitamin D.

Failing to eat regular or sufficient quantities of vitamin-D-containing food increases the likelihood of developing vitamin D deficiency. Even with a vitamin-D-rich diet, it is not usually possible for a person to maintain sufficient levels of vitamin D in their body from food alone. For this reason, vitamin D deficiency is a very common problem worldwide.

Failing to source additional vitamin D from sunlight

Getting Vitamin D From Food

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When it comes to consuming more vitamin D, it is important to understand the difference between D2 and D3especially if you follow a vegan or vegetarian diet. While animal sources provide D3, plant sources only offer D2 , says Crouch. Vitamin D3 is the form we produce via the sun and is the bodys preferred form, which means it more effectively increases vitamin D levels in the blood, she explains.

Given that, the the most concentrated food sources of vitamin D are cod liver oil, trout, and salmon, according to the National Institutes of Health. However, since we ultimately need 3,000 IU of vitamin D per day just to reach that 30 ng/ml baseline of acceptable D levels, we cant rely on these foods alone. But what about milk, you might ask? Well, it turns out that a glass of milk provides 100 IU of vitamin D.

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How To Raise Your B12 Levels Fast

The most common way to treat B12 deficiencies is by adjusting your diet. If this is unsuccessful, vitamin supplements may be recommended.

If youre looking to boost the amount of vitamin B12 in your diet, you should eat more animal products, like meat, seafood, dairy and eggs. Fortified breakfast cereals are another great way to get more B12.

It is possible that your doctor may want you to take a vitamin B12 supplement in addition to your diet change. Typically, these supplements come in both pill and nasal spray form.

If your doctor wants to raise your B12 levels quickly, he or she may give you a higher-dose vitamin B12 shot.

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The Bottom Line On Vitamin D Deficiency

Many of us dont get enough vitamin D from our diet or the sun, making deficiency common. Symptoms like brain fog, low mood, and suboptimal bone density can tip you off to low vitamin D levelsand supplements are often necessary if you want to get your levels up to a truly optimal place of 50 ng/ml or higher.*

Mouth Issues Like Bleeding Gums Cracked Skin And Oral Lesions


You could be deficient in B vitamins, iron, or zinc. Cracks at the corners of the mouth and lesions inside the mouth can be a sign of insufficient intake of a particular set of vitamins known as B vitamins. Studies of both oral lesions and angular cheilitis have found that often people with these symptoms also had B vitamin deficienciesparticularly in thiamine , riboflavin , and pyridoxine . Meanwhile, gums that bleed easily can signify a Vitamin C deficiency.

How you can address the deficiency: Add foods and supplements rich in vitamins B1, B2, and B6, as well as iron, zinc, niacin , and vitamin C. Foods rich in these nutrients, include salmon, tuna, poultry, eggs, organ meats, legumes, nuts, seeds, and leafy greens like Swiss chardconsider accompanying these foods with vitamin C rich foods that aid in iron uptake, such as broccoli, cauliflower, red bell peppers, and citrus fruits. To ensure B vitamins, iron, zinc, and vitamin C are at optimal levels, pharmacists recommend taking a B-complex supplement that includes vitamin C combined with iron and zinc supplements.

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Signs You’re Experiencing Deficiency In Vitamin B12

  • Signs You’re Experiencing Deficiency…

Vitamin B12 is a water-soluble vitamin found in animal foods like fish, poultry, meat and eggs.

It is one of the most important vitamins you need since it plays a critical role in the production of your red blood cells, DNA and the functioning of your nervous system.

A deficiency in B12 is common, specifically in those who are older and those who dont eat the foods rich with the vitamin.

Fortunately, many foods, such as certain bread and plant-based milk, will be fortified with B12, making it easier for those who dont consume animal products to stay healthy. A supplement may also be taken if youve been diagnosed with a B12 deficiency.

Knowing what a vitamin deficiency looks like is step one in getting your levels back to normal. Heres everything you need to know about a vitamin B12 deficiency.

To Avoid The Problem Of Measles

Measles is a type of viral infection that is related to our respiratory system. The virus causes problems such as fever, dry cough, and runny nose. If the disease caused by this virus is more severe, wounds or thousands of spots can be seen on the body of the patient. That is why doctors recommend eating more vitamin-A for the treatment of infections. Therefore, it would not be wrong to say that the patient will get rid of this problem by eating foods rich in vitamins. In addition to this, the risk of getting this disease will be greatly reduced.

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Is A Nutritional Deficiency Causing Your Symptoms

Nutritional deficiencies can be caused by different issues, including poor diet, underlying diseases or gland dysfunction or medications that interfere with your bodys ability to absorb nutrients. The good news is that nutritional deficiencies typically are easily treatable with supplements, IV therapy and nutritional counseling. If youre having unexplained and abnormal symptoms, the first step toward feeling better is to schedule an evaluation with the specialized wellness team at Balance Hormone Center. If a nutritional deficiency is identified, we can provide you with the treatment you need to rebalance your levels of vitamins and minerals so you can enjoy optimal health and wellness. To get started, book an appointment online today.

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Signs Of Nutrient Deficiency

How to Tell if You Have a Vitamin D Deficiency &  What You ...

Signs you may be missing key vitamins and minerals, and how to reverse deficiencies

Everyone knows that we need vitamins and minerals to keep our bodies healthy. But how do you know when you aren’t meeting your body’s needs?

“There are many telltale signs of vitamin and mineral deficiencies,” says Patricia Graham, MD, an internal medicine specialist at Rush University Medical Center. “But the good news is that often, if you take steps to address the deficiency, the symptoms will either improve or go away altogether.”

Here, Graham walks through six red-flag scenarios, and how you might reverse any deficiencies found.

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Have You Noticed Recent Changes In Your Mood Skin Or Energy Levels These Seemingly Innocuous Changes Could Be A Telltale Sign Of Vitamin Deficiency

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You eat a balanced diet , you take note of how many servings of fruits, veggies, protein and key nutrients youre getting but are you really getting all of the vitamins you need? If you pop a multivitamin every morning, you probably think youre covered. But vitamin deficiencies can sneak up on you, even when you think youre doing everything right and take a toll on day-to-day signs of health you take for granted.

Eating a healthy, perfectly balanced diet is the best way to get all of the vitamins, minerals and other nutrients your body needs. Yet despite your best efforts, you could start to experience the symptoms of a vitamin deficiency. Theyre often subtle and barely noticeable, but over time a lack of certain vitamins can leave you feeling worse for wear.

If youre noticing any of the following signs, its time to do a vitamin check-in and see what your diet might be missing.

What Are Symptoms And Signs Of An Excessive Vitamin D Intake

There have never been warnings about getting too much vitamin D from the sun so many do not realize that there is such a thing as too much vitamin D. There are negative health consequences from too much vitamin D, but this can only happen with excessive doses of supplements. A Tolerable Upper Limit has been set to avoid any issues, but there is some controversy about how much is too much. A blood level above 150 ng/mL appears to be the point at which problems occur, but some suggest that levels above 120 ng/mL should be the cap. Potential problems are hypercalcemia , hypercalciuria , and hyperphosphatemia . Over the long term, the elevated blood levels of calcium can lead to vascular and tissue calcification, with subsequent damage to the heart, blood vessels, and kidneys. Research has shown that very high doses of vitamin D can actually increase the risk of falls and fractures. A study of 2,256 community-dwelling women, aged 70 years or older, found that over five years those given very high doses of vitamin D experienced 15% more falls and 26% more fractures than those in the placebo group.

The current UL set for vitamin D supplements is as follows:

4,000 IU/day 10,000 IU/day

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Mood Swings Or Changes

Are you having more bad days than usual? Maybe youre noticing that your mood is rapidly swinging from low to high more than is typical. If you arent experiencing other issues, like stress, hormone shifts or PMS, then a vitamin deficiency could be the root of your sudden mood shifts.

A lack of certain vitamins, minerals and other nutrients can make you more likely to experience mood swings, mood changes or even mental health issues. A lack of omega-3 fatty acids can potentially increase your risk for depression or even worsen your symptoms if youre already living with depression. Deficiencies in vitamin B and magnesium have also been linked to depression. And having low levels of these three key nutrients can even affect other mental disorders and your risk for changing, unpredictable moods.

Work towards correcting your deficiency and giving your mood a boost by choosing foods rich in omega-3s. Fatty fish like salmon, sardines and trout are all top options, but you can also try spinach, nut butters and even grass-fed beef.

Which Foods Contain Vitamin B3

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Food sources of vitamin B3 include:

  • meat, including poultry, beef, pork, and fish
  • some nuts, legumes, and grains
  • fortified breads and cereals

These Thai chicken tacos with peanut sauce are a great way to get niacin in your diet.


Vitamin B3 deficiencies are very rare in the United States. In severe cases, low B3 can lead to a serious condition called pellagra.

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How Is Vitamin D Deficiency Treated

The goals of treatment and prevention are the sameto reach, and then maintain, an adequate level of vitamin D in the body. While you might consider eating more foods that contain vitamin D and getting a little bit of sunlight, you will likely be told to take vitamin D supplements.

Vitamin D comes in two forms: D2 and D3. D2, also called ergocalciferol, comes from plants. D3, also called cholecalciferol, comes from animals. You need a prescription to get D2. D3, however, is available over the counter. It is more easily absorbed than D2 and lasts longer in the body dose-for-dose. Work with your doctor to find out if you need to take a vitamin supplement and how much to take if it is needed.


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