As the temperature drops, people with joint and bone diseases (such as arthritis) will feel more uncomfortable than in summer. But in fact, can these problems really be attributed to the lack of “sunlight vitamins” in the dark winter?
Dr. Marilyn Grenville, a nutritionist and author of “Osteoporosis: How to Prevent, Treat and Reverse” said: “Vitamin D helps regulate the body’s calcium and phosphorus levels and is essential for bone and muscle function. “
“It may also have anti-inflammatory effects. As a result, it is believed that vitamin D plays an important role in relieving joint pain, especially where inflammation is caused. It can also help prevent osteoporosis, which weakens bones.”
A study published in 2017 showed that adults over the age of 50 with moderate vitamin D deficiency are more likely to have knee pain within five years and hip pain within two years.
Have you experienced vitamin D deficiency? Share your stories and health tips in the comments below…
Studies have shown that correcting this defect can reduce pain or prevent pain from getting worse.
How lack of vitamin D affects the body
A clinical paper in the British Medical Journal showed that more than 50% of adults in the UK have low vitamin D levels, and 16% of adults suffer from severe vitamin D deficiency in winter.
But vitamin D plays a vital role in strengthening our immune system, and it has even been suggested that it can help fight Covid-19.
Therefore, if you feel that you often have colds or flu, it is probably due to deficiency. Lack of vitamin D can cause fatigue and fatigue and hair loss.
Other symptoms include respiratory illness, numbness, depression, and low mood, especially seasonal affective disorder (SAD). Most importantly, a lack of vitamin D can cause muscle pain, bone loss, and bone (especially lower back) pain.
A study of bone pain showed that people with vitamin D deficiency, especially women, are more likely to suffer from pain in the legs, ribs and joints.
Bone and joint problems
Considering the importance of vitamin D to bone health, it is not surprising to hear that it can also affect diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and osteoporosis.
Research on patients with autoimmune rheumatoid arthritis showed that most participants had low vitamin levels. However, it is not clear why this is. Some medical experts believe that low vitamin D content is a complication of rheumatoid arthritis itself, while other studies have shown that the decrease in vitamin D content is actually caused by corticosteroids taken by patients with the disease.
According to statistics from the Arthritis Foundation, a non-profit organization in the United States, people who take oral steroids have twice the incidence of vitamin D deficiency as those who do not take oral steroids.
Dr. Glenville said: “Not only is vitamin D deficiency very common in patients with rheumatoid arthritis, it is also associated with chronic pain and lower physical and mental health.”
“Another study shows that for patients with early rheumatoid arthritis, a higher intake of vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids may result in better treatment.
She added: “A lack of vitamin D can cause a person’s bones to soften and become weak.”
“This is called osteomalacia in adults and a disease in children.”
These diseases can cause bones to bend, and elderly patients can cause fractures.
In children, the disease can cause developmental delays, and in severe cases can cause bone deformities.
Shockingly, the hospitalization rate of the disease has reached the highest level in half a century.
Can we reverse this problem?
In 2016, Public Health England recommended that everyone in the UK should take vitamin D supplements in autumn and winter. The report also said that those who are most at risk of illness, such as children, the elderly, and black, Asian and ethnic minorities, should take it all year round.
Dr. Glenville explained: “We can only get about 10% of vitamin D from our diet.”
Everyone should consume 10 micrograms of vitamin D every day, but unlike other countries such as Finland and Sweden, the UK does not use vitamins to fortify common foods such as bread and milk. However, you can increase your intake by eating a lot of oily fish, red meat, liver, egg yolks and fortified breakfast cereals.
In addition, it is important to go out as much as possible during the warmer months.
Recently, a research team from the University of Manchester recommended a “small and regular” sun exposure method to ensure that you get enough vitamin D without increasing the risk of skin cancer.
For fair-skinned people, this is equivalent to being exposed to the sun for 10 to 15 minutes a day in spring and summer, while darker-skinned people need 25 to 40 minutes a day.
Dr. Glenville said: “Most people with vitamin D deficiency do not know that they have vitamin D deficiency, so I recommend that anyone with joint pain check their levels.”
“When choosing a supplement, please make sure it is in D3 form, ideally in liquid, because it helps absorption. However, too much vitamin D can cause poisoning, so it is best to stick to it every day
10 mg per day should be taken regularly instead of taking high-dose supplements occasionally. ”
What should I do if I am tired?
Elizabeth Stewart, a registered nutritionist at Vitl, a nutrition research provider, said: “Research shows that physical exercise has a positive effect on energy levels, making it one of the best ways to cope with fatigue.
“Whether it is practicing yoga in the bedroom for 10 minutes or walking in the block, movement is essential for mental and physical health, especially during lock-in periods.”
Diet can also help increase energy levels.
“It is important to get enough fresh and whole foods, rich in vitamins and minerals, as well as protein, carbohydrates and healthy fats.” Carbohydrate-rich foods, such as potatoes, whole wheat bread and rice, and protein, can maintain energy Level and help you stay full for a long time. Eat chicory and other foods that promote intestinal health to avoid bowel syndrome (such as IBS), which affects energy levels.
Foods rich in iron also help fight fatigue. Green leafy vegetables, fortified grains, beans and red meat are good sources of iron. “
If you are extremely tired and of no avail, please contact your GP.