Signs of Vitamin D3 and Vitamin B12 Deficiency
What’s a machine without fuel? Incapable. That’s exactly what your body will be if you do not give it the fuel it needs. We lead hectic lives, often juggling more balls than we can keep from falling to the ground. With schedules that always need us to be brimming with energy along with trying to accomplish all the tasks on our to-do list, our body requires its share of nutrients—ones we can get from eating right and leading a healthy life—but we often struggle to do that. Those are times when our body starts acting up and indirectly tries to tell us that we must pull up our socks and meet all of its vitamin requirements.
Two of the most important vitamins are B12 and D3. Half of the world's population is deficient in vitamin D3. Women and seniors over the age of 60 are also more prone to B12 deficiencies. There is a very high chance of you developing one of these deficiencies, but there’s nothing to worry about if you are able to figure out your deficiencies before it’s too late. Certain symptoms of vitamin D3 and vitamin B12 deficiency can be easily identified. Let’s learn how to figure out your D3 and B12 deficiencies to help you take the right action at the right time.
Why are Vitamin D3 and B12 Deficiencies Common?
Vitamin D3 and B12 deficiencies are common for several reasons:
Vitamin D3 deficiency:
- Limited sun exposure: When the skin is exposed to sunlight, the body produces vitamin D3. People who live in areas with minimal sun exposure, such as those in the north, are more likely to be deficient.
- Melanin: Melanin, a pigment found in dark skin, inhibits the skin's capacity to synthesize vitamin D3 from sunlight.
- Clothing: Wearing clothing that covers the majority of the skin lowers exposure to sunlight, which can contribute to deficiency.
- Aging: When exposed to sunshine, people's skin produces less vitamin D3.
- Diet: Vitamin D3-rich foods are scarce, and it is sometimes difficult to obtain enough through diet alone.
Vitamin B12 deficiency:
- Diet: Because vitamin B12 is mostly found in animal-derived foods, people who adopt a vegan or vegetarian diet may not obtain enough of it.
- Absorption issues: Because of illnesses such as pernicious anemia or gastrointestinal surgery, some people have trouble absorbing vitamin B12 from their meals.
- Age: As people get older, their ability to absorb vitamin B12 from their diet declines.
Signs of Vitamin B12 and D3 Deficiencies
1. Weakness and Fatigue
Often overlooked, feeling tired is one of the most common vitamin D3 deficiency symptoms. If you suffer from chronic daytime fatigue and headaches, getting your D3 levels checked would be a wise decision. Another thing you must check is your B12 levels, as a lack of this vitamin can make you feel tired and low on energy.
D3 enhances bone strength by increasing the absorption of calcium and phosphate, so its deficiency makes you weaker. B12 plays a vital role in the production of healthy red blood cells that carry oxygen for energy production. As a result, a lack of B12 causes fatigue.
2. Mood Changes and Depression
Low levels of B12 are believed to cause sudden mood changes. Some studies also show that mood and brain disorders like depression and dementia could be some of the symptoms of a B12 deficiency. This happens because the fall in vitamin levels causes high levels of homocysteine, which could damage brain tissue and interfere with signals.
A depressed mood may also be the result of a D3 deficiency. If you do not have these essential vitamins, taking supplements may help improve your mood, but it cannot be a substitute for seeking professional help.
3. Bone and Back Pain
Vitamin D3 improves the human body’s absorption of calcium, which is why if your bones ache, it could be one of the many D3 deficiency signs. People who lack this vitamin are believed to be more prone to bone pain in their legs, joints, or ribs. It may also cause lower back pain severe enough to limit a person’s movement.
4. Pale Yellow Skin
Is your skin starting to look pale? Do your skin and the whites of your eyes have a yellow tinge? If yes, you must get your B12 levels checked. Jaundice and pale skin are the most common signs of B12 deficiency, so watch out for these. These symptoms most likely occur because there is less production of healthy red blood cells.
5. Falling Sick Frequently
While it could be the result of flu season, your immune system should be able to fight off the germs and viruses to keep you from getting sick as frequently. Vitamin D3 is known to help you strengthen and boost your immunity to keep colds and coughs away. If your body cannot protect itself against these unwanted guests, it could be the result of a vitamin D deficiency—one you must not ignore.
What Should You do if a Deficiency is Found?
If you have been observing the above signs, you should first get in touch with your doctor to get the numbers. You can take precise steps once you know how much D3 or B12 deficiency you have.
Most of the time, these deficiencies can be overcome by changing your diet or using good nutrient supplements; for more complicated cases, however, medicines might be required.
Diet for B12 Deficiency:
Fish, clams, eggs, and red meat are some food items that can help you keep your B12 levels in the normal range. For vegetarians, milk, nori, shitake mushrooms, and nutritional yeast are great choices. Vegans can supplement their diets with fortified foods or take supplements.
Diet for D3 deficiency:
The best way to boost D3 concentration in your body is to soak in some sun every day. It is free and awesome. Food items you can include in your diet are fish liver oil, fatty fish, egg yolk, and beef liver. Vegans and vegetarians can try supplements or fortified foods to fulfill their D3 requirements.
Vitamin D3 and Vitamin B12 deficiency can weaken the immune system and make people susceptible to all sorts of diseases that impact both the body and mind. Eating healthy foods rich in the two vitamins can help your cause, but it may not always be enough. Also, finding time to cook healthy meals every day could be challenging for a generation that is always on the go. In that case, supplements are always available to give you help.
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