If you’re stressed and not getting enough sleep, go get your vitamin D levels checked. There is new research suggesting a significant correlation between excessive daytime sleepiness and vitamin D deficiency.
It is well known that vitamin D is a primary regulator of calcium and phosphorous, helping to protect bone density. However, more recently scientists have been able to determine exactly how vitamin D functions in the body. We now know that vitamin D plays an important role in metabolic and immune function. Vitamin D deficiency has been linked to many illnesses and chronic conditions, including stress, high blood pressure, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, pulmonary disease and chronic pain.
Previous research provided evidence that a lack of vitamin D is associated with sleep issues. This new study from Louisiana State University examined the link specifically between daytime sleepiness and vitamin D deficiency.
The study, published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, involved a consecutive series of 81 sleep clinic patients who complained of sleep problems and nonspecific pain.The results of the study support a strong correlation between excessive daytime sleepiness and vitamin D.
Based on the association between vitamin D deficiency and daytime sleepiness, we are left with further questions. Is vitamin D deficiency directly responsible for excessive daytime sleepiness and other sleep problems? Or is poor sleep a consequence of other medical conditions associated with vitamin D deficiency, such as stress? Scientists are now looking further into the causes of vitamin D deficiency and its relationship with sleepiness.
One thing is for certain: if you are feeling tired and sluggish during the day, don’t assume you need another cup of coffee. Talk to your doctor. It is quite possible that you are deficient in vitamin D. Supplements, dietary changes, and safe and controlled exposure to sun can all help boost levels in the body. Making sure your body has sufficient levels of vitamin D has important health implications and you just might find yourself with a boost of daytime energy!