Although vitamin D is known to be more important in bone health, it plays a role in the regular functioning of many systems in the body. Child Health and Diseases Specialist Dr. What can be done to increase the level of vitamin D, which is a great support for the immune system and healthy growth of children like adults. Kübra Cenkçi told me.
Although we know it as a vitamin, vitamin D, which is actually a pre-hormone, is effective in the active functioning of many systems in the body and plays a role in the regulation of more than 2000 genes. Although we can get some with food, most of the vitamin D, whose main source is the sun, is synthesized in our skin by the effect of sunlight. Ultraviolet B (UVB) rays are the strongest source of vitamin D. From foods, it is mostly found in oily fish (such as salmon, sardines, mackerel), egg yolk, cheese, kefir, yogurt and mushrooms.
Its deficiency gives opportunity to many diseases.
Although vitamin D is known to be more important in bone health among the people, it plays a role in the regular functioning of many systems in the body. The most important of these is the immune system, whose importance has been understood more recently with the Covid-19 epidemic. In recent years, before the Covid-19 infection, it has been demonstrated by many studies that vitamin D should be at a sufficient level in the body to show the active and normal functions of the immune system. These studies show that if the vitamin D level in our body is below the optimal level, our body is more vulnerable to the attacks of microbes because our immune system does not work well, and especially in children, recurrent upper respiratory tract infections are seen. Studies have also shown that infections such as flu and colds, which occur in those with insufficient vitamin D levels, last longer. Studies have shown that TB disease, called tuberculosis, is more common in people with vitamin D deficiency. In the current pandemic period, it was observed that people with vitamin D deficiency had a more severe Covid-19 infection, and the rate of admission to the intensive care unit was higher in these people.
Great protective effect
Vitamin D, which has an important role in the immune system, protects our body against infections and also protects us against many chronic diseases (Fibromyalgia, thyroid diseases, lupus). In diseases such as multiple sclerosis and autism, a sufficient level of vitamin D provides support against the disease. It is also effective in insulin metabolism and protects us against insulin resistance. Studies have shown that vitamin D, which is also effective in regulating body weight, is also protective against obesity.
It also contributes to the secretion of the happiness hormone
It has been observed that vitamin D also contributes to the secretion of the happiness hormone in the brain, and positive results have been obtained by increasing the vitamin D level in patients with depression. In cancer, which is the plague of our age, it is observed that keeping vitamin D levels in sufficient and high doses reduces the risk for some cancer diseases.
The main source of vitamin D; Sun
Due to the advancing technology and changing lifestyle in recent years, we are actually preventing our body’s vitamin D synthesis without even realizing it. We can say that air pollution, sunscreens we use to protect our skin against the harmful effects of sun rays and sunbathing at the wrong times are the main causes of vitamin D deficiency. If we look at this situation in terms of children, especially infants, since vitamin D is very low in breast milk and there is not enough vitamin D stores at birth, it is absolutely necessary to take vitamin D from outside. When it is not taken, many health problems, especially the immune system, can be seen in our growing baby. In addition to using vitamin D as a supplement for babies and children, it will be good to sunbathe at appropriate times. The most suitable times for vitamin D synthesis are between 11:00 and 14:00 in the summer months. It may be sufficient to sunbathe for 20-30 minutes with the arms open.