Could Lack of Vitamin D Be To Blame For Back Pain?
As a national survey shows that one in five of us are not getting enough vitamin D, could a deficiency in this important vitamin be to blame for lower back pain?
Vitamin D improves the body's absorption of calcium, which maintains bone health; which is why experts believe that a lack of vitamin D could make back pain worse.
Vitamin D helps to regulate the amount of calcium and phosphate in the body – the nutrients that are needed to keep bones, teeth and muscles healthy. A lack of vitamin D can lead to bone deformities such as rickets in children, and bone pain in adults.
During the autumn and winter, you need to get vitamin D from your diet because the sun isn’t strong enough for the body to make vitamin D.
However, the recent National Diet and Nutrition Survey has found that the amount of vitamin D that children are now eating is four times below the national average. It is thought that this may be because the foods that are high in vitamin D have fallen out of favour with younger people.
These foods include sardines, kippers and liver. Other foods that contain high levels of vitamin D are eggs, fortified cereals and red meat.
As vitamin D helps keep bones and muscles healthy, a lack of it could therefore make it more likely that people will have issues with their joints and muscles. Experts believe it could be to blame for throbbing or aching in the bones, particularly the knees and back.
Vitamin D is also thought to be important in preventing bone fractures, as it ensures bones are strong enough to withstand falls. And there have been recent studies that have claimed that increasing vitamin D intake could help people with rheumatoid arthritis, as well as asthma.
It is difficult for people to get enough vitamin D from food alone. It is recommended that everyone should consider a daily supplement containing 10mcg of vitamin D from early October to the end of March.
People with dark skin from African, African-Caribbean and South Asian backgrounds should consider taking vitamin D supplements throughout the year. It is also recommended that children aged one to four take the supplements all year round, to ensure their bones are healthy and strong.
This article was written by a third party source and does not reflect the views or opinions of Ramsay Health Care unless explicitly stated.
Additional comments on the page from individual Consultants do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of other Consultants or Ramsay Health Care.