Vitamin D deficiency is common in winter because there are shorter daylight hours and weaker UV levels from the sun, making it difficult for the body to synthesise the vitamin. Nicknamed the ‘sunshine vitamin’, it plays a vital role in the body, helping absorb calcium for strong bones and teeth and keeping the immune system in good shape. But what are the symptoms to recognise? According to experts head sweats are a sign to be wary of.
This is one of the more common signs of vitamin D deficiency, according to Holland & Barrett, in particular a sweaty scalp.
Excessive sweating is common and can affect the whole body or just certain areas.
It’s also very normal – it’s just the way the body cools itself down when hot.
But excessive sweating, also known as hyperhidrosis, could indicate a more serious health problem.
The high street health store says: “Studies have shown that vitamin D deficiency can contribute to an impaired immune system, making it more difficult to fight infections.
“Vitamin D receptors in our brains help brain cells receive and understand chemical signals – a lack of vitamin D is likely to affect the way our brain communicates.
“A common sign of vitamin D deficiency is a sweaty scalp (this is one reason newborn babies are monitored for head sweats).
“A sweaty scalp could be an early sign of vitamin D deficiency.”
While it’s unlikely, if excessive sweating is linked to something more serious the possible causes can be heart attack, , leukaemia, and diabetic hypoglycaemia, advises Mayo Clinic.
“Higher vitamin D levels were associated with decreased risk of any pelvic floor disorder in all women,” said researcher Samuel Badalian of SUNY Update Medical University in Syracuse, New York, and colleagues in Obstetrics & Gynecology.
He added: “Given the increase in the number of patients with pelvic floor disorders, further evaluation of the road of vitamin D is warranted.”
Other signs of vitamin D deficiency can include:
- Getting sick often
- Bone or back pain
- Hair loss
There are five ways recommended to help you avoid vitamin D deficiency when levels are low, according nutritionist Karen Langston, a spokesperson for the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.
Speaking to Arthritis Foundation she said these include eating more fish, simply opening a window, and taking supplements.