Indeed, many scientists are now paying attention to vitamin D and its effect on humans. As a gynecologist, I would like to emphasize how this vitamin affects the female body.
Vitamin D and its importance for women’s health
Studies show that low vitamin D levels are associated with the risk of fertility disorders, endometriosis and polycystic ovary syndrome. Studies show higher rates of pre-eclampsia, preterm birth, bacterial vaginosis and gestational diabetes in pregnant women with low levels of the vitamin.
Lack of vitamin D can cause depression or chronic fatigue syndrome.
A study on the effect of cigarette smoke on vitamin D3 levels was published in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (JACI). It was found that active smokers or those, exposed to secondhand smoke are at higher risk of developing vitamin D3 deficiency, which leads to an increase in respiratory diseases, in particular asthma and sinusitis.
How often should this vitamin levels be checked in adults and children? What tests to take?
There are no recommendations on the question “how often to check the level of vitamin D” for healthy people. It is believed that for preventive purposes, you can check its level in the autumn-winter period, especially for residents of northern countries. Vitamin D has 2 forms: vitamin D2 and vitamin D3, as well as several metabolites. In our body, these forms are converted into the active metabolite of vitamin D – 25-hydroxyvitamin-D, also known as 25(OH)D.
Pregnancy and vitamin D
There is also proven:
- Vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy increases the risk for the baby to have obesity and diabetes in childhood;
- Lack of this vitamin increases the risk of developing preeclampsia (a complication of pregnancy, which is manifested by increased blood pressure and the protein in the urine);
- Low vitamin D levels increase the risk of insulin resistance, autoimmune, cardiac and oncological diseases;
- The main source of vitamin D is egg whites, red fish, sun exposure in the morning without sunscreen from 7:00 to 9:00;
- Taking 2000 – 4000 IU of this vitamin during pregnancy prevents premature birth (but do not self-medicate!).
Dear Women, I wrote all this for you to discuss with your doctor the levels of vitamin D in your body and choose a preventive or therapeutic dose!
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Even more information about you, your body and the processes in it – in my course All About You. How it feels to be a woman.
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With love, your Natalia Silina,
UNICEF and UNFPA expert on sexual education
Contact the Lior Medical Center for help if you feel any symptoms, or better – for routine examinations. This is the best way to identify the problem at an early stage and prevent complications.