Vitamin D is one of the vitamins dissolved in fat, but its sources and absorption methods vary according to its varieties. This article defines the types of vitamin D, the difference between them, and the role of each in the human body.
1- Vitamin D
Vitamin D 1
Vitamin D 2
Vitamin D 3
2-Daily need for vitamin D
3-Tips for improving the level of vitamin D in the body
Here are the important types of vitamin D.
Vitamin D 1
Vitamin D1, the first vitamin D, consists of a mixture of ergocalcifirol and lumesterol.
The history of the discovery of vitamin D1 comes from the German world Adolf Windaus, who was able to identify 3 types of vitamin D initially, and then named it vitamin D1, vitamin 2, and vitamin D3.
Later in time, scientists found that vitamin D1 contained a homogeneous mixture of two compounds rather than a pure pure vitamin D compound, so this label for vitamin D1 is no longer used
Vitamin D 2
A type of vitamin D that cannot be manufactured in the human body, consisting mainly of ergocalciferol, where it is found in plant sources, such as mushrooms, vegetable oils, and fortified foods.
Vitamin D 2 helps absorb calcium and phosphorus, which enhances the process of bone building in the body. Vitamin D-2 is also used in the treatment and prevention of bone disorders, such as osteoporosis and fragility.
Vitamin D2 is formed in plants through constant exposure to sunlight, where UV radiation helps to manufacture vitamin D2 in mushrooms, and after taking it, the liver receives vitamin D2 and converts it into a compound of 25 hydroxybutamin D2 (English: 25-Hydroxyvitamin D2), which is later called calcifidiol.
One of science’s concerns about vitamin D2 is that supplements made from it are less chemically stable, being more sensitive to moisture and heat fluctuations than others, and degrading faster over time. Therefore, it is recommended to store vitamin D 2 supplements in its own packaging, and at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and direct sunlight.
Vitamin D 2 supplements are often used in the treatment of hereditary hypphosphate, thyroid gland laziness, and rickets.
Vitamin D 3
Vitamin D is a cholecalciferol, which is made in large quantities in the skin after exposure to sunlight. This type of vitamin D is also extracted from animal sources, as it is available in large quantities in fish oil, liver, egg yolk, and obesity.
The body generally manufactures vitamin D when exposed to sunlight, but using sunscreen in abundance, wearing protective clothing, limited exposure to sunlight, or having dark skin, all hampers the process of making vitamin D3.
It is therefore recommended to be exposed to sunlight approximately half an hour twice a week, with light clothing allowing the sun to pass. But the fact that these recommendations differ from country to country depending on the location of the state and beyond the equator, so it must be ensured that a person gets a reasonable amount of time in the sun to get his vitamin D need.
In contrast, you should avoid spending long periods under the sun without using sunscreen, especially if the skin is light in colour, in order to avoid sunburn, which in turn is a primary risk factor for skin cancer.
Unlike dietary vitamin D, exposure to sunlight will not cause high amounts of vitamin D3 in the skin and will not contribute to vitamin D toxicity, because human skin is very smart, adjusting the amounts of vitamin D manufactured in it to the body’s need.
However, a high proportion of people suffer from vitamin D deficiency as a result of not being exposed to the sun, as a result of the nature of their work that requires staying indoor, or because they live in countries with predominantly winter days of the year. They are therefore advised to take vitamin D3-rich foods, and to consult a doctor or pharmacist to take vitamin D3 supplements that compensate for their deficiency.
When a person takes vitamin D3 or foods rich in it, the body converts it through the liver into a compound of 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 (25-Hydroxyvitamin D3), which increases the concentration of vitamin D in the body more efficiently and effectively, so vitamin D3 is one of the best vitamin D in pharmacies, and the best vitamin D for children.
It consists of 22,23-dihydro-ergocalciferol (22,23-Dihydroergocalciferol), and is manufactured in fungi and yeast. And the fact that there are not enough studies on the role of vitamin D4 in the body.
Daily need for vitamin D
The level of vitamin D is measured by the micro-unit or international unit (International units IU), and one microgram is equal to 40 IU. The following is an illustration of the daily need for vitamin D varieties in general depending on the age group:
- Newborns up to 12 months: 400 IU or 10 ug.
- Children aged 1- 18: 600 IU, or 15 micrograms.
- Adults 18-70 years of age: 600 IU, or 15 ug.
- Older persons after age 70:800 IU, or 20 ug.
- Pregnant or nursing women: 600 international units, or 15 micrograms.
Tips for improving the level of vitamin D in the body
The various types of vitamin D in the body can be upgraded in several ways, including the following:
- Take fish oil supplements, such as whale liver oil (Cod Liver Oil).
- Eat fat fish at least twice a week.
- Choose milk and orange juice that writes on its packaging that it is supported by vitamin D.
- Eat eggs and butter.
- Spend half an hour a day in the sun.