Vitamin D deficiency:

George Morris physiotherapy wigan

Vitamin D deficiency: What happens to your body if you forget to take supplements?VITAMIN D, vitamin B12, iron and calcium are some of the most important vitamin and minerals for bodily function. A deficiency in any of these can be detrimental to a person’s health, so taking supplements can help keep your levels topped up. But happens to your body if you forget or stop taking them?Supplements can provide additional nutrients when your diet is lacking or when certain health conditions cause you to develop an insufficient or deficiency.You can get into the habit of taking vitamins and supplements religiously but then one day, life can get in the way and you suddenly forget to take them.But what actually happens to your body when you suddenly stop taking your supplements?While there is research to suggest that taking additional vitamins and supplements has little to no effect on your body’s functioning, it is also thought that the sudden withdrawal of vitamins can cause certain symptoms.Illness, exhaustion and a weakened immune system are all side effects of forgetting to take your supplements - particularly if your body is used to the additional vitamin intake. Likewise, it can make you more vulnerable to various diseases.Feeling weak, tired, hungry and foggy from vitamin withdrawal can cause you to want to avoid social activities, stop exercising or even develop sleep problems.Dr Daniel Fenton, medical director of London Doctors Clinic, offered his insight on what happens to your body during a sudden withdrawal.How long after you stop taking supplements do you feel the health effects?“If you have been taking a supplement for a true deficiency i.e iron supplements, it takes approximately 12 weeks to see noticeable differences in your iron levels on blood tests due to the life cycle of red blood cells.“However, it is not uncommon to notice a difference with a few weeks of stopping the supplement. As a general rule of thumb, noticeable differences are seen within weeks to months.”But if you were simply taking a general multivitamin or supplement without having any known deficiency, you are unlikely to notice a major difference if you stop them, according to Dr Fenton, as your blood levels will typically be far in excess of what you require.He explained: “A classic example of this is B12, normal levels range between 160-925 ug/L, on supplements, you may often have a level reported as in excess of 1000ug/L as this is where the lab stops measuring.“In this circumstance, it will take several months for your B12 level to fall, and even when it does, you will still be well within normal range so are unlikely to notice any ill health effects.”What happens if you miss a day of taking supplements?Dr Fenton said: “Absolutely nothing. Simply take the next supplement when you remember.”But what if you want to stop taking supplements - what should you do?If you are taking a supplement for a true deficiency, such as a low iron, B12, folic acid or vitamin D, then you should consult your doctor before making any changes.But Dr Fenton added: “If however, you have been taking general vitamin supplements, it is absolutely fine to just stop. If you have a healthy, balanced diet you are very likely to get everything you require from a good home cooked meal, no supplements required.“The only exception to this rule is Vitamin D, the sunshine vitamin, do consider having your Vitamin D level checked and top it up if it is low.”

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