Vitamin D is a naturally formed vitamin produced in the body when exposed to sunlight. It is also termed as the ‘Sunshine Vitamin’ and ranges from Vitamin D1 to Vitamin D5. Out of these, Vitamin D2 and Vitamin D3 are the two important forms of vitamin and are called ‘Calciferol’.
The major function of Vitamin D is to regulate the calcium and phosphate levels in the body. It is responsible for the bone health and prevention of cardiovascular disease, diabetes and other such ailments.
Impact of Vitamin D Deficiency
When a person is deficient of vitamin D, then the bones become feeble. Deadly diseases such as rickets in children, juvenile diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, arthritis and Alzheimer’s are caused due to vitamin D deficiency. A study published in Dermatology online journal, in the year 2010, revealed that the low level of vitamin D hinders the growth rate of hair follicles.
In many frigid countries, people lacking vitamin D often take sunbaths in order to get exposure to sunlight. People work maximum indoors today and as a result, there is no exposure to sunlight and vitamin D attainment becomes necessary for the human body. According to the researches at Cairo University, women who experience hair loss have low levels of iron and vitamin D2 that proved that vitamin D deficiency caused hair loss.
Are Telogen Effluvium and Vitamin D Deficiency Connected?
Telogen effluvium is the condition where one experiences shedding of hair excessively. A study analyzing the loss of hair in women in the year 2013 concluded that low ferritin and levels of vitamin D were connected and suggested supplementation as a possible treatment approach. Vitamin D supplements assist as alternatives for individuals who lack exposure to sunlight or suffer deficiency of vitamin D from food.
Care should be taken not to consume vitamin D supplements exceedingly as it causes side effects too. Vomiting, constipation, poor appetite, mental disorder, nausea and tiredness are the side effects that develop from excess vitamin D consumption.
Importance of Vitamin D for Treating Hair Loss
A healthy skin scalp stimulates the growth of hair. Vitamin D plays a vital role to prevent hair loss in individuals. Studies have disclosed the fact that deficiency of vitamin D results in hair damage and shedding. Intake of vitamin D in accurate quantity not only prevents hair loss but also increases the quality of hair that grows. The function of vitamin D is to activate the cells within the hair shaft and stimulate the hair follicle.
Sources of Vitamin D
One can overcome the deficiency of vitamin D by including the following dietary sources :
- Fishes like salmon, sardine, cod and tuna contain high-level fatty acids and are rich in Vitamin D.
- Fortified Foods including bread, milk, soymilk, dairy products, orange juice and cereals are good sources of vitamin D.
- Mushrooms include a good amount of vitamin D and its different varieties are available in the market today.
- Egg yolks and Beef liver are good sources of vitamin D too.
The daily requirement of this vitamin in individuals ranging from 19 to 70 years is 600 IU. Utmost care must be taken to include vitamin D in your daily diet.