Seniors: Are You Getting Enough Vitamin D?

Vitamin D is essential to good health. Without it, the body can develop all types of issues including high blood pressure, cancers, autoimmune disorders, and there is also an increase in the risk of falls because Vitamin D is necessary for bone and muscle strength.

What Does Vitamin D Do?

  • It regulates cell growth
  • It carries messages throughout the nervous system
  • It helps the body fight infection
  • It helps muscles move

Most of the time, people get enough vitamin D through sunlight on bare skin. However, for people who live in northern climates or people who may not get outside often enough, absorption can be a problem and then it becomes a deficiency. Unfortunately, when it comes to seniors, there are a number of reasons why they may not take in enough vitamin D and these include:

  • Not as much exposure to sunlight as when they were younger due to decreased amounts of outside activity
  • Seniors tend not to take in as much vitamin D as they used to in their diet
  • Many seniors have lowered intestinal absorption abilities due to various issues or diseases like Crohns
  • The skin tends to thin as people age

Why Do You Need Vitamin D?

  • It helps lower the risks for developing bone disorders like osteoporosis
  • It lowers the chances of moving into a nursing home before absolutely necessary
  • It helps seniors maintain independence and physical mobility
  • It helps to prevent fractures and other traumas due to falls
  • It lowers the risk of developing diabetes, various cancers, and cardiovascular issues

A simple blood test can help determine if a senior has a vitamin D deficiency. Up until the age of 70, people should be taking in 600 IU of vitamin D every day. After 70, that rises to 800 IU. Too much vitamin D can have just as serious side effects as too little.

Always Best Care has been in the senior care giving industry since 1996. During that time, they have assisted over 25,000 seniors maintain their independence and improve their quality of life. If you have questions about home care in Grafton, or would like free referrals for assisted living, call the Always Best Care Greater Cleveland location at (440) 791-7177 to set up a free care consultation. They look forward to hearing from you.