Are you stuck at the same weight, even after exercising and maintaining your diet? To your surprise, you might be deficient in vitamin D and need to supply your body with it. Read on to know why it is a vital vitamin for weight management.
How to know whether you are deficient or not?
Serum or plasma 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25OHD) helps measure your vitamin D status. As per ICMR (2010), it is recommended for Indians to have 600-800 IU of vitamin D on a daily basis, when there is no sunlight exposure, in order to maintain serum levels. But the supplementation dosage depends upon many factors like serum levels, body weight, etc.
How can adequate levels of vitamin D assist in weight loss?
If you are not able to lose stubborn fat or reduce weight, it could be due to low levels of serum vitamin D as it is inversely associated with measures of obesity. Obese individuals are at a 35% higher risk for vitamin D deficiency across all age groups.
Many studies have investigated the effect of vitamin D supplementation on weight loss, also research combining weight-loss interventions along with increased vitamin D intake, either through consumption of supplementation or foods fortified with vitamin D. After measuring the 25OHD levels before and after, it was observed that 25OHD levels are related to the degree of weight loss.
Furthermore, suggesting that vitamin D status might be associated with weight loss success.
A randomised study, done by Vanillin et al. 2013, 445 overweight and obese adults were divided into 3 groups. One group was provided 20,000 IU of vitamin D supplementation twice weekly, other one weekly and the third group was placebo. After 12 months, it was observed that it did not have a definite effect on weight, but it did help reduce fat mass and distribution. However, further research is needed to get more concrete results.
It may aid weight loss by suppressing the storage of fat cells, thus reducing the accumulation of fat cells. Also, high levels of vitamin D helps increase the serotonin levels (neurotransmitter), positively responsible for regulating your mood, appetite and sleep.
Also, evidence suggests that the addition of vitamin D supplementation acts as a synergistic aid in weight loss induced dietary and exercise intervention.
Effect of weight loss on vitamin D
Weight loss also might lead to increased 25D concentrations, which may, in turn, provide protection against chronic disease. Also, even a small amount of reduction in weight (5-10%) can lead to a modest increase in vitamin D levels.
To conclude, it is vital to maintain adequate levels of serum vitamin D as it helps decrease body fat %, improves weight loss when combined with exercise and diet intervention, therefore limiting chances of weight gain. Hence, it is positively associated with fat loss, better health and supplementation becomes vital especially if deficient in it.
- Song, Q., & Sergeev, I. N. (2012). Calcium and vitamin D in obesity. Nutrition research reviews, 25(1), 130–141. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0954422412000029
- Slusher, A. L., McAllister, M. J., & Huang, C. J. (2015). A therapeutic role for vitamin D on obesity-associated inflammation and weight-loss intervention. Inflammation research: official journal of the European Histamine Research Society ... [et al.], 64(8), 565–575. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00011-015-0847-4
- Vanlint S. (2013). Vitamin D and obesity. Nutrients, 5(3), 949–956. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu5030949
- Arunabh, S., Pollack, S., Yeh, J., & Aloia, J. F. (2003). Body fat content and 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels in healthy women. The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism, 88(1), 157–161. https://doi.org/10.1210/jc.2002-020978