According to a recent study conducted, it was found that almost 90%* of the Indian population suffers from Vitamin-D deficiency. Being an agrarian country, it comes as a surprise to see the majority of the population of the country suffering from Vitamin-D deficiency when the major source of this vitamin is the sun. We ask Mr. Ravikiran Namburi, Vice President – Sales and Marketing, Cadila Pharmaceuticals, who has been working in the healthcare industry since a long time, about what is Vitamin D deficiency, what the causes of Vitamin D deficiency are and how can it be treated.
“Vitamin D, like all other vitamins is essential for our health and well-being. Vitamin D is mostly made in the skin by exposure to sunlight. A very small amount of naturally existing food items contain Vitamin-D. Hence it is important to keep a check on the lifestyle we live. We need to get enough amount of sunlight every day and include foods that naturally contain Vitamin D such as oily fish (such as sardines, pilchards, herring, trout, tuna, salmon and mackerel), egg yolk, red meat and liver. The importance of Vitamin D cannot be understated. It has many functions, including:
Vitamin D deficiency causes and symptoms
Many people have no symptoms or may complain of only vague ones such as tiredness or general aches. One might be prone to have Vitamin D deficiency because:
Who all can be affected by Vitamin D deficiency?
How Vitamin D deficiency can be prevented?
It is estimated that around 20-30 minutes of sunlight on the face and forearms around the middle of the day 2-3 times a week is sufficient to make enough Vitamin D in the summer months. This time may vary according to the skin tone and the age group that you belong to. One should be getting at least 400 International Units a day of Vitamin D.
Some people are more at risk of vitamin D deficiency and so are recommended to take Vitamin D supplements routinely. These include all pregnant and breastfeeding women, all babies and young children aged 6 months to 5 years, people aged 65 years and over, and people who are not exposed to much sun. In addition, it is advised to have routine Vitamin D supplements for people with certain gut (bowel), kidney or liver diseases. One should consult a doctor to understand how much Vitamin D they need.
Vitamin D, like any other vitamin, plays an important role in keeping your body healthy. From helping your bones stay strong, it can also play a role in preventing other serious diseases. While sunlight is the best source of getting Vitamin D, too much exposure to the sun’s rays can be damaging. Consulting a doctor for your requirement of Vitamin D and finding out the best source of it, can help you live a healthy life.”