The human body requires nutrients that are absorbed through food and other sources to be healthy. Vitamin D3 is a type of Vitamin D sourced from animal-based foods and sunlight. As a nurse, learning everything you can about this essential nutrient is important. Understanding everything you need to know about it can help you educate your patient on their Vitamin D3 intake for their health. Today’s post will help you understand what you need to know about it.
What is Vitamin D?
Vitamin D is a nutrient we introduce to our body through food, and it is a hormone our bodies can naturally produce. A fat-soluble nutrient, Vitamin D is known for helping the human body absorb two other essential nutrients and minerals, phosphorus and calcium, and retain them. Both of these are necessary for healthy bones. Vitamin D also offers several other benefits, including reducing inflammation, controlling infections, and reducing the growth of cancerous cells.
What is Vitamin D3?
Also called Cholecalciferol, Vitamin D3 is a type of Vitamin D sourced from animal-based sources and sunlight. It can also be consumed in the form of nutrient supplements. Vitamin D3 is also known as the “sunshine vitamin” due to our skin’s ability to produce Vitamin D in the presence of ultraviolet-B (UVB) rays from sunlight.
Since Vitamin D is necessary to help your body absorb and retain calcium and phosphorus, it is crucial to get enough Vitamin D daily. The daily recommended value of Vitamin D is 800IU per day. However, the recommended intake might differ based on a person’s age. People younger than 70 years old need roughly 600 IU of this essential nutrient daily. Adults older than 70 need at least 800 IU of this vitamin daily.
What is the Difference Between Vitamin D2 & D3?
Vitamins D2 and D3 are two types of the same nutrient. These two forms differ based on the food sources. Vitamin D2 primarily comes from plant-based sources and fortified foods. Vitamin D3 is found in animal-based food and is made by our skin when exposed to UVB rays from the sun.
When it comes to raising Vitamin D levels in our bodies, Vitamin D3 is considered better. While our bodies absorb both into the bloodstream, the liver processes them differently. The liver processes Vitamins D2 and D3 into a compound called calcifediol. Between the two, Vitamin D3 yields greater calcifediol quantities than Vitamin D2.
Health Risks of Insufficient Vitamin D Intake
Maintaining healthy Vitamin D levels is essential to our well-being. If our body does not produce or consume enough Vitamin D, it can lead to our bones losing density and becoming weaker. The condition is also called osteoporosis and leads to an increased risk of fractures. Severe Vitamin D deficiency can lead to even worse concerns. Children with extreme Vitamin D deficiency can develop rickets, a disease that causes their bones to become soft and malleable. Severe deficiency of this nutrient in adults can cause a condition that leads to weaker bones, muscle weakness, and bone pain called osteomalacia.
Foods Rich in Vitamin D3
The primary source of Vitamin D3 for the human body is the skin producing it due to UVB exposure from the sun. However, people living in regions where they do not get a lot of sunlight should consider increasing their intake of Vitamin D3-rich foods such as:
- Beef liver
- Fatty fish like mackerel, fish, and salmon
- Fatty fish liver oils
- Egg yolk
Very few foods are naturally rich in Vitamin D3. Fatty fish and fish liver oils have the greatest quantities of it. You can also find small quantities in beef liver, egg yolks, and cheese. Some mushrooms also contain Vitamin D2. Fortified food like cereals and fortified dairy products can also be a good source of consuming Vitamin D.
Educating your patients on various vitamins and their recommended intake levels can help you perform your role as a nurse better. Speaking of patient education, you must also pursue nursing continuing education courses to advance your career and get recertified.
Fast CE For Less can offer a convenient solution if your hectic schedule makes it difficult to find the time to invest in nursing continuing education courses. Online nursing CEUs like the ones offered by Fast CE For Less at https://fastceforless.com/ce-courses-for-nursing/ give you quick, easy, and affordable access to high-quality nursing education courses.