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The Most Common Nutrient Deficiencies (And Their Signs)

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Vitamin deficiencies can be very identifying, with some of them presenting themselves through symptoms like a general lack of energy or change in hair quality. Let’s take a look at the most common vitamin deficiencies of the modern world, so that you may be able to spot them if they ever happen to you or someone you know.

The causes of vitamin deficiencies

Before we begin, it pays to understand the three main causes of vitamin deficiencies. They are:

A) Unhealthy habits. Often stemming from a poor diet or spending too much time indoors. In this scenario, mild vitamin deficiencies may go undiagnosed for years, afflicting people who don’t take regular blood tests;

B) Major life changes. Often dietary changes — such as going vegan and neglecting to take supplements, or adhering to some new crazy diet you found online;

C) Underlying medical conditions. Which include genetic metabolic disorders and Crohn’s disease.

All the deficiencies listed below are caused by one or more of the factors above.

1 – Iodine deficiency

Nearly a third of the world’s population suffers from iodine deficiency, making it one of the most common in the world. The most common symptom is an enlargement of the thyroid gland. Iodine is essential for the thyroid to work properly, it’s absence can negatively affect your body’s growth and brain development.

The effects of iodine deficiency are even more dangerous for kids since it can stunt their development, including the development of their brains.

 Common sources of dietary iodine include seaweed, fish, dairy, and eggs. In some countries — including the US —, table salt is required by law to be enriched with iodine in an effort to combat this deficiency.

2 – Vitamin D deficienc

It is estimated that over 42% of adults may suffer from this form of nutrient deficiency. The challenge with Vitamin D deficiency stems from the fact that it is very hard to get the recommended daily amount of this vitamin through diet alone.

The human body is capable of producing vitamin D via contact with sunlight. To produce the recommended amount of vitamin D, you need between 10 and 30 minutes of midday sunlight several times a week. The amount necessary varies depending on local weather and how sensitive your skin is to sunlight. Another alternative is to take the vitamin via supplements.

You want to make sure to get the recommended amount since Vitamin D does way more than just keep your bones strong. It is part of the process that tells your cells which genes to turn on and which to turn off. Almost every cell in your body has vitamin D receptors.

Bone loss and muscle weakness are both common symptoms of this deficiency. Common dietary sources of Vitamin D include fatty fishes like Salmon, sardines, and trout; as well as egg yolks.

3 – Iron deficiency

Affecting over 25% of the world population, this deficiency may be the most common worldwide. Women and children are more vulnerable to suffering from this deficiency; it is estimated that as many as 47% of preschool children worldwide suffer from iron deficiency.

Iron is key in the process of blood production, specifically in the production of red blood cells. Hence why the most common symptom of iron deficiency is anemia, which is characterized by a sharp drop in the number of red blood cells in your bloodstream.

General exhaustion, weakness, and a weakened immune system are common symptoms. Red meat, organ meat, kidney beans, and broccoli are all good sources of dietary iron.

If you are thinking of buying vitamin supplements online, be sure to only get it from reputable laboratories and distributors. The same goes for other types of natural remedies, such as CBD oils and tinctures.

Mahesh is leading digital marketing initiatives at RecentlyHeard, a NewsFeed platform that covers news from all sectors. He develops, manages, and executes digital strategies to increase online visibility, better reach target audiences, and create engaging experience across channels. With 7+ years of experience, He is skilled in search engine optimization, content marketing, social media marketing, and advertising, and analytics.

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