‘Weird’ vitamin D deficiency symptoms to look out for, according to Dr Eric Berg

There are some pretty weird symptoms associated with a vitamin D deficiency, according to Dr Eric Berg, and there’s research behind each one.

Vitamin D is vital in helping regulate the amount of calcium and phosphate in the body, nutrients needed to keep bones, teeth and muscles healthy.

The body creates it from direct sunlight on skin when outdoors. Particularly during the winter months, people may not get enough.

Posting to his YouTube channel, Dr Berg said: “Vitamin D is so important and I think most people do know it’s associated with bone loss, bone pain, low immune system, depression, high blood pressure, inflammation, asthma, especially in children, as well as poor sleep.

“But there are 23 additional symptoms that you probably had no idea are connected to a vitamin D deficiency.”

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1. Nightmares

Typically nightmares are related to a vitamin B1 deficiency, but a vitamin D deficiency can also produce the manifestation of a nightmare, said Dr Berg.

2. Restless leg syndrome

This too is usually a vitamin B1 deficiency because someone’s consuming too many carbohydrates, said Dr Berg, but it can also be a vitamin D deficiency. He added: “Interestingly enough I used to have restless leg syndrome, and probably because of all the sugar I was eating was not only depleted in vitamin B1, but vitamin D as well.”

3. Acne

Dr Berg explained the sebaceous gland that is involved in acne, especially if it’s inflamed or causing some type of obstruction so oil can’t get out of this gland, could also easily stem from a vitamin D deficiency.

4. Bipolar

Dr Berg said there’s been quite a few studies related to someone who has bipolar and they’re always deficient in vitamin D. He added: “We know how important vitamin D is in mood disorders, especially depression, and other mood disorders including bipolar.”

5. Skipped heartbeat

This is because of the direct connection with a vitamin D deficiency and what it can do to the heart, said Dr Berg. He added: “It can definitely affect the pace of the heart so you can start off having a skipped beat and then a palpitation, and maybe even worse, develop arrhythmias, even atrial fibrillation.”

6. Breathing disorders

Dr Berg said you might know a lot of pneumonia and lung infections are related to a vitamin D deficiency because of the immune system being weak and then making you susceptible to viruses. But he warned: “Wheezing is definitely a symptom of a vitamin D deficiency. If you have a child, a newborn that is wheezing or making a weird breathing sound, suspect a vitamin D deficiency. In fact anything related to breathing, including sleep apnoea – make sure that person is getting enough vitamin D.”

7. Skin disorders

Skin disorders are another big one, said Dr Berg, especially psoriasis and eczema. He explained: “Psoriasis is an autoimmune problem and any autoimmune problem is usually involving the immune system and a vitamin D deficiency associated with that. In fact, the best remedy for any autoimmune problem is taking larger amounts of vitamin D3 – at least 50,000IU.

“I would also add in there making sure the person is eating very clean, like a healthy keto diet and intermittent fasting because the problem with autoimmune is inflammation, so if you want to reduce inflammation vitamin D and fasting are the two most important things.”

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8. Sinus issues, especially in children

Give them more vitamin D or get them exposed to the sun, advised Dr Berg.

9. Hay fever

Hay fever in adults and children is associated with a vitamin D deficiency, said Dr Berg.

10. Rapid breathing

If your infant has this rapid breathing, suspect a vitamin D deficiency, said Dr Berg. He continued: “If a mother is breastfeeding there’s not usually a lot of vitamin D in breast milk unless that mother is getting more sun or taking vitamin D or consuming foods high in vitamin D.

“Vitamin D is a very common deficiency with women who are carrying a baby as well as when they’re breastfeeding because of how much the body’s being tapped into the reserves when feeding the child breast milk. So vitamin D is so important in your prenatal as well as during your period of time of breastfeeding.”

11. Tonsillitis

Dr Berg said this next one is interesting because it’s also associated with children that have recurrent tonsillitis, or very enlarged tonsils. He said: “Give them more vitamin D. And there are certain types of vitamin D that come in a liquid you can use, easy to give a small infant or child, just put it in their liquids.”

12. Structural developmental problems

Another one that’s associated with children is structural developmental problems, said Dr Berg, and he added: “I’m talking about flat feet, bowed legs, scoliosis, kyphosis which is hunch back, or a swayed back which is lordosis, dental malformations. If the child’s jaw is not correct or there’s an overbite or underbite or there’s just some problem with the teeth that you need a dentist to correct, suspect a vitamin D deficiency.”

13. Long Covid

Long Cover where a person has fatigue, that can be either a B1 deficiency or a vitamin D deficiency, said Dr Berg.

14. Early puberty

If you have this early development that shouldn’t be happening at a certain age, suspect vitamin D deficiency, said Dr Berg.

15. Uterine fibroids

Apparently in one study these fibroids were halted or stopped when the group consumed 50,000IU of vitamin D3, said Dr Berg.

16. Irregular menstrual cycles

A female is 13.3 times more likely to have irregular menstrual cycles when they are deficient in vitamin D, said Dr Berg.

17. A longer menstrual cycle is also associated with low vitamin D

There’s a 7.8 times more likelihood for that cycle to go longer if there is deficient vitamin D, said Dr Berg.

18. Urinary incontinence

A person is three times more likely to have urinary incontinence if they’re deficient in vitamin D, said Dr Berg. He said: “There was one study in older black women that related to this, and they also noted that the group who took 2000IU of vitamin D3 didn’t see any improvement in this urinary problem, so you have to take more, at least 10,000IU.”

19. Vertigo

Vertigo is also associated with low vitamin D, said Dr Berg. He said: “This is because a certain type of vertigo is a calcium crystal building up in the inside of your ear and that’s interfering with the little hairs that are associated with your equilibrium, and taking enough vitamin D can help prevent that. You also have to take vitamin K2 as well. In fact any time you take vitamin D3, also at the same time take vitamin K2, at a ratio if 10,000IU of vitamin D3 to 100mcg of vitamin K2.”

20. Sarcopenia

A problem of muscle loss as you age. Dr Berg said: “As someone ages you’re seven times more likely to develop sarcopenia if you’re low in vitamin D3.”

21. Myopia

This usually happens when a person is exposed to too much screen time – looking at the computer and not getting enough sun, said Dr Berg. But added: “There’s definitely an association between that condition and low vitamin D.”

22. Glaucoma

This is when there’s pressure built up in the eye. Dr Berg said: “Apparently you’re twice as likely to get glaucoma with a vitamin D3 deficiency.”

23. Erectile dysfunction

You’re apparently 1.3 times more likely to develop this if you’re low in vitamin D3, according to Dr Berg.

Dr Berg noted: “Of course there’s many other factors but I’m just talking about the association with vitamin D and all these other conditions.”

The UK government advises everyone in the UK to consider taking a daily supplement containing 10mcg of vitamin D in autumn and winter.

If you experience any symptoms of vitamin D deficiency or suspect you may be deficient, speak to your GP.

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