Why is vitamin D important?
Vitamin D controls how much calcium, iron, magnesium, and zinc you can absorb from your food. If you do not receive enough vitamin D, you could be at risk from weak bones, aches and pains and other more serious complications including heart disease and cancer.
Some foods are a good source of vitamin D, such as fatty fish, egg yolks and milk. However, the majority of your vitamin D is made by your own body when exposed to sunlight. In Ireland, for about half the year there is not enough sun for our bodies to make enough vitamin D. For the rest of the year, if you spend time inside, fully clothed outside or wearing sun cream, it is likely you will not get enough sun to meet your vitamin D requirements. Vitamin D supplements can be helpful, but it is always a good idea to test your vitamin D levels to check if you do have a vitamin D deficiency.
What are the signs and symptoms of vitamin D deficiency?
Vitamin D deficiency is a common health problem. Not enough vitamin D in your diet or not getting enough exposure to sunlight can result in you suffering from various symptoms including:
- Weakened bones
- Aches and pains in your bones and joints
- Weakened immune system making you more likely to suffer from colds and flu
There is also evidence that a lack of vitamin D plays a role in the onset of Type 1 Diabetes, particularly in children and young adults. Research findings suggested that a vitamin D deficiency can predict the risk of major cardiovascular problems including heart attacks, heart failure, stroke and even death.
Who should get tested?
There are certain high-risk groups for vitamin D deficiency, including individuals:
- With darker skin pigmentation
- Who live in places where there is limited sunlight
- Who spend little time outdoors
- Who use sunscreens and protection
- Who are older
If you suffer from Crohn's Disease, Celiac Disease and Cystic Fibrosis, you are also at a higher risk of Vitamin D deficiency as these conditions reduce the body's ability to absorb vitamin D from food.
How do I get tested?
Our Better2Know vitamin D tests are simple, quick, and easy. We can take a small blood sample at a clinic of your choice, and we will send your sample to our accredited laboratory for analysis. Once analysed, we will be able to tell you know if your vitamin D levels are healthy or if you should consider taking vitamin D supplements if your test reveals your levels of vitamin B12 are low.
Book your Vitamin D test now
Are you interested in booking a test? Call our friendly Patient Services team now using the number listed above to book your vitamin D test. Our Patient Services team are committed to answering any questions you may have and arrange your booking for you.
At Better2Know, we provide a variety of health tests and screens available throughout Ireland. We pride ourselves on our friendly and knowledgeable service, our team are available 24/7.