Vitamin D Deficiency: Meaning, Diagnosis and Overview

What is Vitamin D Deficiency?

Vitamin D also known as the sunshine vitamin as it is produced by the body in response to sunlight. It occurs naturally in a few foods including some fish, fish liver oils, and egg yolks and in fortified dairy and grain products.
There are two forms of vitamin D, known as D2 and D3.
  • Vitamin D2, also known as ergocalciferol, comes from fortified foods, plant foods, and supplements.
  • Vitamin D3, also known as cholecalciferol, comes from fortified foods, animal foods (fish, eggs, and liver), and can be made internally when skin is exposed to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun.
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin. This means that it is stored in our fat cells and is constantly being used for calcium metabolism and bone remodelling.

If your exposure to sun is less, suffer from milk allergies, or adhere to a strict vegetarian diet, you may be at risk for vitamin D deficiency.
 Vitamin D deficiency overview

Recovery Time

Recovery from this deficiency may take about few months it mainly depends on the type of the treatment and lifestyle of the individual


Diagnosis is done mainly by 25-hydroxy vitamin D blood test

FAQs prepared by doctor

Q1.What is Vitamin D and why is it required for the body?
Vitamin D is a micronutrient which can be produced endogenously by the body, in the skin on exposure to sunlight. It is also present in several foods. Vitamin D is mainly required for the absorption and deposition of calcium and phosphate into the bones.  An adequate Vitamin D level in the body prevents Diabetes, Coronary artery disease, skin disease and Improves immunity.

Q2.How do I get Vitamin D deficiency?
You get Vitamin D deficiency if you are not exposed to sunlight for long time and are not taking foods rich in Vitamin D.

Q3.How do I know I have Vitamin D deficiency?
If you are getting frequent infections, feeling lethargy, pain in the bones, muscles, then you should check your Vitamin D levels. Blood tests give us the quantitate analysis of Vitamin D in the body.

Q4.What are the harmful effects of Vitamin D deficiency?
Chronic Vitamin D deficiency leads to decreased absorption of Calcium and Phosphate from the intestines and deposition in the bones. This causes weakening of the bones and leads to a condition called Rickets in children and Osteomalacia and Osteoporosis in adults.

Q5.How do I correct Vitamin D deficiency?
Vitamin D deficiency is corrected by large dose of Vitamin D injection followed by large dose of oral supplements for a short period of time. Later you should take the supplements daily in RDA dosage or take foods fortified with Vitamin D and expose adequately to sunlight every day.

Q6.How do I prevent Vitamin D deficiency?
You can prevent Vitamin D deficiency by taking foods rich in Vitamin D and adequate exposure to sunlight.

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