Vitamin D is vital for our body as it regulates calcium homeostasis and maintains bone integrity. But day by day new studies are coming up, about brain development and health with relation to vitamin D.
Endogenous synthesis of vitamin D starts in human skin under the influence of ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation of sun, which is why this vitamin is often called the sunshine vitamin.
Recent evidence in clinical literature suggests that the development of autism spectrum disorders may be attributable to maternal Vitamin D deficiency. Vitamin D is a critical contributor to immune function during pregnancy as the placenta contains a considerable amount of Vitamin D necessary for fetal development.
Vitamin D and depression
Vitamin D is associated with mood disorders. Depression is a common mood disorder, affecting more than 120 million people worldwide. As some researchers have identified, vitamin D status (more precisely its deficiency) seems to be a potent biomarker of depression.
Deficiency of vitamin D in maternal and offspring shows some disabilities in early life including learning and memory problems and grooming behaviours. Deficiency of vitamin D is associated with neurodevelopmental disorders in children.
Memory and vitamin D
People with very low levels of vitamin D in their blood, are more likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.
Stroke and vitamin D
Severe vitamin D deficiency is associated with incident stroke. Lower vitamin D levels increase consequence of stroke.
Protection from infection
Vitamin D enhances the pathogen-fighting effects of monocytes and macrophages that are important parts of your immune defense and decreases inflammation, which helps promote immune response
How much is enough vitamin D
Vitamin D is the sunshine vitamin. It is abundant in the nature. 1,000 to 2,000 IU daily need. This amount will be synthesized from 15 to 30 minutes of sun exposure two to three times a week. Only sun exposure can prevent so many problems.
Which sunshine is best for vitamin D
Midday, especially during summer, is the best time to get sunlight. At noon, the sun is at its highest point, and its UVB rays are most intense. That means you need less time in the sun to make sufficient vitamin D. Many studies also show that the body is most efficient at making vitamin D at noon.
So we need only some minutes in sun daily to get a good amount of vitamin D. It can prevent from multiple problems of our brain. Winter is there it’s time to sit in sun and relax and absorb some vitamin D.
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Eyles DW, Feron F, Cui X, Kesby JP, Harms LH, Ko P, McGrath JJ, Burne TH. Developmental vitamin D deficiency causes abnormal brain development. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2009 Dec 1;34:S247-57.
Kesby JP, Eyles DW, Burne TH, McGrath JJ. The effects of vitamin D on brain development and adult brain function. Molecular and cellular endocrinology. 2011 Dec 5;347(1-2):121-7.