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POSTED ON APRIL 2, 2021 BY TORONTO FUNCTIONAL MEDICINE CENTRE
Toronto Naturopathic Doctor working at the Toronto Functional Medicine Centre, highlights the top 6 benefits of getting Vitamin D supplementation through naturopathic medicine. You’ve heard countless health influencers praise the advantages of vitamin D. So what’s the big deal with getting extra vitamin D anyway?
Well, especially during frigid Canadian winters, there’s no better time than now to start vitamin D supplementation. Read below to learn about this “sunshine vitamin” and its impact on the human body.
What is Vitamin D?
Vitamin D is both a hormone that we produce and a vitamin we must consume. It supports the bones and regulates calcium in the body. When we unveil any bare skin to the sun, our skin begins to construct vitamin D for the body.
But during winters in Canada, there’s a shortage of sunlight from the dark skies. People who are not frequently exposed to sunlight – including many Canadians – may lack vitamin D, which may cause a deficiency of this vitamin. Naturopathic doctors recommend getting supplementation to avoid this.
Some of the individuals who are at risk of a vitamin D deficiency include:
– those with dark skin pigmentations
– people with digestive health or malabsorption issues (i.e. Crohn’s disease, celiac, etc.)
– those with limited sun exposure from extra coverings, robes, etc.
– and those who are pregnant and/or obese.
Unfortunately, a vitamin D deficiency is repeatedly overlooked because the symptoms are not always apparent.
So how can vitamin D supplementation impact your well-being? As verified by Naturopathic Doctors, here are some benefits vitamin D may deliver to the body:
Vitamin D may sustain your immune system.
Did you know that when you’re deficient in vitamin D, you could be susceptible to chronic diseases or illnesses such as respiratory tract infections? Many studies have observed connections between vitamin D status and immune protection against several viruses. Perhaps a vitamin D supplement may help rally immunity during cold-and-flu seasons, and may help improve quality of life.
Sleepy? Vitamin D may help lessen fatigue.
Another sign of a vitamin D deficiency is fatigue. This is because vitamin D assists with cellular energy by giving mitochondria a helping hand with oxygen use. Vitamin D also provides energy to numerous body parts, including the muscles. Thus, boosting vitamin D levels in the body through naturopathic practice may improve cellular energy, thereby possibly producing a positive impact on health such as improved energy levels.
Here at the Toronto Functional Medicine Centre, our team of health care providers led by our Toronto Naturopathic Doctor, work with patients to improve health through education on the relationship between nutrition and vitamin supplementation. Physical health concerns such as feeling fatigued may be alleviated.
Vitamin D may help minimize the winter blues.
Since vitamin D is affiliated with brain function, researchers reckon that low vitamin D levels may have an impact on health and may contribute to affecting mental illness or emotional health. But more research must be conducted on this because it’s not clear if depression is directly caused by a vitamin D shortage: “Subjects with depression may be more likely to develop low vitamin D because of lower outdoor activity or reduced nutrients intake,” postulates a Neuropsychiatry article. Nevertheless, scientists concur that studying vitamin D may unveil further knowledge about mental health conditions or mental health status and the winter blues.
Achy muscles? Vitamin D may bring some relief.
According to Frontiers in Immunology, “[t]here now exists several clinical studies and some animal studies, mostly in rodents, that show that vitamin D deficiency leads to a worsening of pain whereas appropriate vitamin D supplementation leads to better outcomes relating to pain.” Accordingly, vitamin D supplements and intramuscular shots may have potential in alleviating muscle aches.
Naturopathic Doctors who are also licensed to practice IV therapy in Toronto, may render a vitamin D IV treatment. You may schedule an appointment if you want to learn more on how to get started with vitamin d IV therapy.
Note: an initial consultation may be required for people with complex health concerns or health issues. Naturopaths work with a health care team, and applies an integrative functional medicine approach using a combination of naturopathic medicine, IV therapy, lifestyle modification, food counseling and nutrition, among other natural care modalities, so patients may possibly achieve optimal health.
If you’re worried about bone loss, vitamin D may help prevent this.
Vitamin D heavily participates in calcium absorption and bone metabolism. When your bone mineral density is low, this may hint that calcium (and perhaps other minerals) may be lacking in the body. Older individuals diagnosed with bone loss assume they need to augment only their calcium intake; but there’s a chance they may be lacking vitamin D, too. With that, supplemental vitamin D may aid in preserving bone mass as you age.
Vitamin D and cancer prevention may be linked.
According to the National Cancer Institute (NIH), it’s been suggested that vitamin D and cancer risk are potentially related: “In studies of cancer cells and of tumors in mice, vitamin D has been found to have several activities that might slow or prevent the development of cancer, including promoting cellular differentiation, decreasing cancer cell growth, stimulating cell death (apoptosis), and reducing tumor blood vessel formation (angiogenesis),” explains the NIH. Nevertheless, further research on the link between vitamin D deficiency and certain cancers must be conducted for additional analysis.
Naturopathic medicine may be used as an adjunct cancer therapy.
Consult with your primary health care provider on how this may fit into your treatment regimen. Naturopathic doctors may offer helpful information on what type of naturopathic treatments may be used that fits your current health needs.
What’s Next? How to Treat a Vitamin D Deficiency
Symptoms of a vitamin D deficiency include:
– mood changes
– bone and muscle pain
If you think you’re lacking vitamin D, speak to your family doctor. There are various treatments available, such as food and dietary changes, vitamin D supplements, and vitamin D booster shots, which are administered directly into the muscle.
Which vitamin D treatment is suitable for you? Let our Toronto naturopathic doctor assist you. At Toronto Functional Medicine Centre, we recommend natural therapies that are adapted to your personal health goals and biology. Have other health complaints? You are welcome to contact us anytime. We are currently booking appointments for new patients – call (416) 968-6961 or leave a message here.
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