We all have been told time and again to sit in the Sun for a while in order to get Vitamin-D. No matter whether you engage in sports /physical exercise or not, Vitamin D is something everyone should pay attention to. Moreover, optimal Vitamin-D intake becomes even more important for athletes, bodybuilders and gym freaks. Vit-D is a fat-soluble vitamin involved in a lot of bodily functions either directly or indirectly. Here’s all you need to know.
1. Better Bone Health
It protects against rickets/osteomalacia (weakening/softening of bones) which can be caused by inadequate levels of Vitamin D and other minerals. Not to mention, it reduces the chances of bone fractures in the elderly, significantly. Hardcore lifters and sportspersons also need to ensure they have healthy and strong bones in order to stay in the game for a long time.
2. Prevention Against Osteoporosis
Vitamin D helps your body absorb and use calcium to build stronger bones. Almost everyone consumes calcium in supplemental form these days but if you are not getting enough Vitamin D, your calcium supplementation is of little use.
3. Prevention against Certain type of Cancers
A number of researches say that optimal Vit-D concentrations in blood may reduce the risk of colon, skin and prostate cancer.
4. Heart Disease
A growing number of studies have related low levels of Vit-D with cardiovascular diseases. This is especially more serious if you consume plenty of calcium without taking relevant amounts of magnesium and Vit-D. Low levels of Vit-D can result in excess of the calcium consumed, built up around arteries leading to a stroke or even a heart attack in a worst case scenario. So, don`t just pop in calcium pills without knowing if you are getting enough Vit-D or not.
5. Prevents Muscle weakness
8 weeks of supplementation with vitamin-D resulted in 10% increase in V02 max (VO2 max refers to the maximum amount of oxygen that an individual can utilize during intense exercise) of professional rowers. Athletes who engage in indoor sports don’t get enough sun exposure might want to try supplementing with Vit-D.
6. Brain Health
Depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide, affecting about 121 million people (WHO-2008). A study by Berk et al. (2007) reported that low levels of Vitamin-D levels may play role in depression and other mental disorders. The lower the Vitamin D levels, the higher the chances of depression. Not only this, other studies have proven that adequate levels of Vitamin-D can improve your mood, memory and other cognitive abilities
7. Increased Testosterone levels
Well, this is a no brainer. Because of its effect on mood elevation and ability to increase IGF-1, testosterone enhancing effects of up to 25% have been seen in at least 3 studies. One of these studies found out that when healthy male participants take 3332 IU’s (almost 3 grams) of vitamin D daily for a year, they end up having 25.2% more testosterone on average when compared to a placebo. This is the reason it becomes even more important for someone trying to gain muscles/strength in gym.
Singh Daman is an On-Floor and online Personal Trainer and PG diploma holder in fitness and nutrition who believes Physical Fitness is as important in one`s life as Breathing,Sleeping and eating. You connect with him on his YouTube Page