Vitamin D is actually a hormone that your body can produce itself using sunlight. In order for our body to store enough vitamin D even in the winter months, it needs very short, unprotected sun exposure. It is sufficient to expose your face, hands and arms to the sun two to three times a week between March and October. Fair skin types only need twelve minutes - this corresponds to half the time after which, according to the recommendation of the Federal Office for Radiation Protection, a sunburn occurs, which you should always avoid by using sufficient sun protection.
Vitamin D is active in almost all cells of our body and influences cell metabolism. Throughout life, Vitamin D is crucial for building and maintaining bones and ensures that calcium from food can be absorbed well and incorporated into your bones. The muscles also benefit because it supports your muscle performance and improves coordination.
Some studies have suggested that Vitamin D may be important for cardiovascular health, reduce the risk of diabetes and some cancers, and boost the immune system. In other studies, however, these effects could not be proven.
In the case of mild deficiency, the symptoms are very unspecific and only in the case of very severe vitamin D deficiency do typical symptoms such as muscle weakness and bone pain occur. Older people in particular are at risk of developing a deficiency, as vitamin D formation decreases over the years.
Are you very rarely outdoors, do you usually cover your body completely or are you dark-skinned? Then the risk of developing a deficiency is increased. In general, there is a seasonal problem, because in November to February there is too little sunlight in northern Europe to produce enough Vitamin D.
An overdose is only possible through an excessive intake of vitamin D preparations, which promotes the formation of kidney stones or renal calcification.
If you would like to learn more about vitamin D, simply make an appointment at one of our Avi Medical practices and discuss your needs with our team of doctors. Here you can decide together whether a vitamin D test makes sense for you.
Good to know: Currently, the laboratory determination is only covered by statutory health insurance in the case of specific pre-existing conditions.