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How Does Your Body Absorb Vitamin D?

Vitamin D is essential for basic functions. This particular vitamin can be acquired naturally or through fortified dairy products. But did you ever wonder how our body absorbs it?

Vitamin D was discovered in the early 1920s. As commonly known, the sun is one of the primary sources that supply this vitamin. It is absorbed by our body and converts the cholesterol in our Skin to vitamin D.

What Is Vitamin D?

Vitamin D is one of the 13 vitamins that was discovered in the early 20th century. It helps promote healthy bones in our body by assisting in the absorption of calcium. It is also a suitable inhibitor of cancer cell growth, according to the research made by Dr. Michael Holick from the Boston University School of Medicine. (Source: Web MD)

When Was Vitamin D Discovered?

The discovery of vitamin D happened during the 20th century, but it was already used in multiple studies before that.

In the 1800s, studies conducted by physicians discovered that those children who were raised in rural areas had a lesser percentage of developing rickets, the softened or weakened bone in children, than children raised in the city. They discovered that children growing up in rural areas had more exposure to sunlight and had better nutrition. (Source: National Library of Medicine)

Who Was Adolf Windaus?

Adolf Windaus was a German Organic Chemist born on December 25, 1876, in Berlin, Germany. Windaus won the Nobel prize award for his study on substances focusing more on vitamin D and its biological effects in 1928.

Windaus began his career in the medical field, receiving his Ph.D. from the University of Freiburg in 1899. Following his Ph.D., he switched to chemical studies and held positions in Austria and soon was appointed as the head of the chemical institute at the University of Gottingen from 1915 to 1944.

Windaus was the one who discovered the 7-dehydrocholesterol, the pioneer of vitamin D and introduced it as a steroid. Windaus also found out that when 7-dehydrocholesterol is converted into vitamin D when one of its chemical bonds is broken when sunlight strikes it. (Source: Britannica)

What Are The Benefits Of Vitamin D?

Vitamin D primarily helps to keep our bones healthy. This vitamin is also an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory and helps in regulating several cellular functions in the body.

Here are some benefits of having sufficient vitamin D in the body:

  • Regulates mood and reduces depression
  • Fights disease
  • Supports weight loss

However, people who have vitamin D deficiency may develop serious health issues. There are a few reasons why people might not get enough of the vitamin.

  • Using sunscreen or too much of it.
  • Dark Skin means higher melanin levels, which leads to lower absorption of vitamin D.
  • Living in a big city where buildings are blocking sufficient sunlight.
  • Too much staying indoors.
  • Living in a highly polluted area.

    (Source: Healthline)

What is the Right Amount of Vitamin D?

Too much vitamin D may also not be suitable for the body, so here is the recommended daily amount to ensure a balance intake:

  • 400 international units for children up to age 12 months
  • 600 international units for ages 1 to 70 years old
  • 800 international units for ages over 70 years old

    (Source: Mayo Clinic)

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