VIT D Deficiency – An Epidemic

vitamin-d-and-the-sun

Today, mejority of the urban indians have low vitamin D levels and are on injections or supplements to correct the deficiency. Yet, there are many who ignore the importance of Vit D and other vitamins in the human body.

Vit D is a miraculous nutrient and its deficiency is linked to lifestyle disease including obesity, arthritis, diabetes, heart disease and even cancer.

We know that Vit D plays a major role in Human bone health but its health benefits are not just limited to bones.

Vitamin D expert William Grant, PhD, puts it this way:

The health benefits of vitamin D extend to at least 100 types of disease, with the strongest evidence for many types of cancer (breast, colon, ovarian, pancreatic, prostate, and rectal), cardiovascular disease, diabetes types 1 and 2, respiratory infections such as type A influenza and pneumonia, other infections such as sepsis, and autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis.”- (taken from article by Dr. Jonny Bowden).

Research shows that sufficient amount of this hormone-like vitamin helps in balancing the hormones thus lowering the risk of Hyper/Hypothyroidism and PCOD, the two most prevailing health concerns amongst the young generation today. Balanced levels of vitamin D also helps in weight loss, keeps you feeling young and energetic.

You can get vitamin D from the sun but it must get converted to its usable form D3. Proper absorption of vitamin D relies on the presence of essential fats in the body. Bring in that desi ghee (homemade or organic),groundnut, mustard and coconut oils. Learn about fats well rather than blindly following the media. Stick to your roots. Use your common sense. If coconut oil or mustard oil was “FATTY” than entire south India and west bengal regions would have been obese.

To my clients surprise, I add besan pakodas (yup those deep fried gram flour snacks) to their diet plan and ask them to enjoy it once a week (obviously homemade especially during these rainy days). These provide the body with essential fats required for assimilation of vit D. No, this essential fat intake will not affect your cholesterol levels, Leading an in-active lifestyle and eating packaged foods and biscuits will. And, Besan (gram flour) is rich in phytosterols and fiber just like our very famous “OATS”, One more reason to stick to your local traditional food 🙂

So this rainy season, chuck the guilt out and enjoy your homemade besan pakodas and bhajiyas 🙂 (Remember the rule of thumb- only eat when hungry & DO NOT OVEREAT).

When Vit D is assimilated well it improves brain health as well. Wonder why those pakoras always make you feel good? 😉

Dosage:

Vitamin D expert Zoltan Roma, MD, MSc, author of “Vitamin D: The Sunshine Vitamin, states that “Research now indicates that the correct figure for the minimum daily requirement is 4000 IUs”.- taken from Article by Dr. Jonny Bowden.

It is always advisable to get your Vit D levels checked and take the supplements as advised.

References:-

1) Bowden, Jonny, Dr. “Vitamin D Toxicity: What You Need to Know.” Weblog post. Jonny Bowden. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 July 2015.

2) Bowden, Jonny. “Can Vitamin D Protect Your Brain?” Web log post. Jonny Bowden. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 July 2015.

3) Diwekar, Rujuta. “http://www.outlookindia.com/article/vitamin-d-and-our-fave-snack/294681.” http://www.outlookindia.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 3 July 2015.

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