Vitamin D3, sunshine vitamin

May 20, 2022

Vitamin D3 is an important substance required by the human body, and its main physiological functions are as follows.

1. to improve the absorption of calcium and phosphorus by the body and to saturate plasma calcium and plasma phosphorus levels

2. promoting growth and bone calcification and sound teeth

3. increasing phosphorus absorption through the intestinal wall and increasing phosphorus reabsorption through the renal tubules.

4. maintaining normal levels of citrate in the blood

5. preventing the loss of amino acids through the kidneys.


Vitamin D is a class of fat-soluble vitamins that are steroidal compounds, known for their important role in maintaining bone health.


Vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol) and vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol), collectively known as calcitriol, are the two most prominent vitamin D's that are closely associated with human health.


Vitamin D2 is produced by ultraviolet light exposure to ergosterol in plants, but it is scarce in nature and cannot be synthesized by the body.


Although vitamin D3 can be obtained from the diet, the types of foods that provide vitamin D are few and low and unstable. Therefore, most of the vitamin D required by the human body (80% to 90% or more) has to be synthesized through exposure of human skin to ultraviolet light from sunlight.


The ultraviolet rays of sunlight with wavelengths of 290~315nm penetrate human skin, and the 7-dehydrocholesterol in the skin is activated by the double bond after ultraviolet radiation and transformed into vitamin D3 precursors, which need to undergo two kinds of hydroxylation in the human body to activate and thus exert biological effects, so people call vitamin D3 as ''sunshine vitamin''.


The main function of vitamin D is to work synergistically with parathyroid hormone and calcitonin to balance the levels of calcium ions and phosphorus in the blood to maintain strong and healthy bones and muscles. We are familiar with rickets, chondromalacia, osteoporosis and other systemic chronic diseases characterized by skeletal lesions, which in many cases are caused by insufficient intake of vitamin D in the body, resulting in disorders of calcium and phosphorus metabolism.


In addition to the well-known bones, kidneys and intestines, vitamin D receptors (VDR) are also widely distributed in the blood lymphatic system (e.g. T lymphocytes, B lymphocytes, etc.), the genitourinary system (e.g. breast, prostate, ovaries, etc.), as well as in the nervous system, parathyroid glands and other tissues and cells in the human body, and they control 3% of the entire human genome and about 200 species of human gene network. Therefore, the effects of vitamin D deficiency are not only limited to the skeletal and muscular systems, but are also associated with autoimmune diseases, cardiovascular diseases, Parkinson's disease in the elderly, obesity, malignancies, and other conditions.


In most industrialized countries, vitamin D deficiency symptoms are more common in infants, children and adults, and are considered to be endemic in all age groups. One of the main causes of global vitamin D deficiency is the underestimation of the critical role of sunlight.


Under the right conditions, 10 to 15 minutes of sunlight on the arms and legs several times a week can produce the amount of vitamin D3 needed to meet our needs. Therefore, it is important to encourage active participation in outdoor activities and exposure to sunlight during sunny weather, especially in winter, to ensure that the body has sufficient vitamin D synthesis to maintain a healthy organism.



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