What Does Vitamin D3
Discussions about the health benefits of Vitamin D have taken the industry by storm. Remarkable findings about the sunshine vitamin have been reported in a goldmine of studies conducted during the turn of the 21st century. Regarded as a rockstar nutrient, it has garnered widespread attention in that its importance in overall health and in the prevention of chronic diseases are at the forefront of research.  Previously thought of as significant only in preserving bone health, health care professionals and researchers are now discovering that Vitamin D shows some promise for those being treated for a range of health conditions from metabolic syndromes to autoimmune disorders.
There are several forms of Vitamin D, but the two most important are: Vitamin D2, or ergocalciferol, and Vitamin D3, also called cholecalciferol. Vitamin D2, a derivative of ergosterol, is produced by plants such as mushrooms in response to UV radiation. D2 is most commonly used for supplements. Vitamin D3 is the naturally-occurring D Vitamin. It is produced by the body through exposure of the skin to direct sunlight, technically making it a hormone. It can also come from animal-based foods like salmon or cod liver oil, dairy products, fortified processed foods, or from dietary supplements. Both cholecalciferol and ergocalciferol need to be processed in the liver and kidneys in order to be converted to calcitriol, the usable form of Vitamin D. Since both Vitamins D2 and D3 function in a similar manner, they are often referred to collectively as Vitamin D.
Although both D2 and D3 supplements can both be taken safely, there is a difference in their effectiveness. Among the two though, Vitamin D3 is shown to be more potent and is far superior for the body because it is absorbed and utilized better than D2. So, what are Vitamin D3 used for? Vitamin D3 is primarily essential for bone health as it regulates the usage of calcium in the body and helps to prevent fractures and osteorporosis as the body ages. The bones require calcium to produce hydroxyapatite, a m ineral tissue that keeps bones strong and resistant to fractures. Vitamin D3 is also key to supporting the function of the immune and nervous systems. It is thought to stimulate the body to produce peptides in the white blood and epithelial cells that line the respiratory tract, thus, protecting the lungs from infection.  Due to the importance of the D vitamin, health care experts continually remind the public to make sure that they are getting adequate amounts of the essential vitamin
Although both D2 and D3 supplements can both be taken safely, there is a difference in their effectiveness. Among the two though, Vitamin D3 is shown to be more potent and is far superior for the body because it is absorbed and utilized better than D2. So, what are Vitamin D3 used for? Vitamin D3 is primarily essential for bone health as it regulates the usage of calcium in the body and helps to prevent fractures and osteorporosis as the body ages. The bones require calcium to produce hydroxyapatite, a mineral tissue that keeps bones strong and resistant to fractures. Vitamin D3 is also key to supporting the function of the immune and nervous systems. It is thought to stimulate the body to produce peptides in the white blood and epithelial cells that line the respiratory tract, thus, protecting the lungs from infection.  Due to the importance of the D vitamin, health care experts continually remind the public to make sure that they are getting adequate amounts of the essential vitamin.
8 Surprising Health Benefits Most Doctors Are Unaware Of
A pertinent question for some would be: what is Vitamin D3 good for in the body? There is a long list of benefits when we talk about Vitamin D. However, in this article we will enumerate 8 health benefits that most doctors are not aware of.
#1 . Vitamin D Augments Weight Loss Effects in Older Women
A year-long study of older overweight women with insufficient D levels found that weight loss along with Vitamin D supplementation augmented the benefits of weight loss on systemic inflammation linked to cancer and chronic disease. The study author states that there is evidence suggesting that overweight individuals have lower D levels because it is "sequestered in fat depots, leading to lower bioavailability. The study was published online in Cancer Prevention Research. The study's lead author recommends that clinicians encourage patients to maintain a healthy weight to reduce chronic inflammation and its effects as well as to have overweight individuals tested for Vitamin D deficiency or insufficiency, and to advise supplementation as required. 
#2 . Vitamin D Supplementation May Improve Gut Health and Prevent Metabolic Syndrome
A new study revealed that Vitamin D has the potential to improve, or possibly prevent, metabolic syndrome, a set of factors that increase one's risk for heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and other health conditions, according to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Researchers found that Vitamin D deficiency is a requirement for the progression of the syndrome in mice. With Vitamin D supplementation, there was an improvement in the metabolic syndrome in the rodents. Also, the researchers discovered that low D levels aggravated the imbalance in gut flora and that when bad gut bacteria is overabundant, it can result to gut problems like constipation or chronic diarrhea, and intestinal gas. The researchers are set to find out if the effect in humans is similar. 
#3 . Vitamin D May Be a Partial Cure for Psoriasis
Apart from those already mentioned, what does Vitamin D3 do for the body? Actually, it presents itself as a likely cure for psoriasis. Psoriasis is an autoimmune condition characterized by irregular and rapid division of skin cells, resulting to reddening, thickening, and irritation of the skin that is then covered with white scales of dying skin cells. It is also accompanied by rashes and pain on the affected areas. New research has found a link between low D levels and psoriasis. Sufferers of the disorder have reportedly noticed that their symptoms improved during warmer months when their skin was exposed to more sunlight. During the colder months, they report worsening of the symptoms. New psoriasis therapies are now also being aimed at targeting Vitamin D levels so as to reduce the symptoms.
#4 . Taking Vitamin D Reduces the Risk of Dying from Heart Disease
According to a study published in The Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, people who had levels of Vitamin D above 40 nanograms per milliliter had a significantly lower risk of dying due to heart disease compared to those who had D levels lower than 10 nanograms per milliliter as well as individuals who had levels less than 20 nanograms per milliliter. So, what does Vitamin D3 do specifically in this case? According to the study, Vitamin D levels that reach 80 nanograms per milliliter may aid in living longer. 
#5 . Vitamin D, Along with Calcium, Can Improve Cholesterol in Postmenopausal Women
If you are a middle-aged woman, do you realize what Vitamin D3 does for you? Taking calcium and Vitamin D supplements after menopause has been found to improve women's cholesterol profiles, with the effect linked to increasing D levels. The study also found that among the supplement users, those who had higher blood levels of Vitamin D had higher levels of the good cholesterol, or HDL (high-density lipoprotein) and lower levels of triglycerides. Likewise, the supplements provided more benefits to study participants who did not smoke and drank less alcohol. According to the authors of the study from the Women's Health Initiative, women who are at higher risk for Vitamin D deficiency are advised to take calcium and Vitamin D. 
#6 . Adding Vitamin D to Food Can Prevent Colds and Flu
A study carried out by researchers from Queen Mary University in the U.K., Winthrop University Hospital in the U.S., and the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden revealed what Vitamin D3 does for the body potentially. Researchers found that millions of cold and flu cases can be prevented just by supplementing food with Vitamin D. Researchers reviewed existing data from 25 previous studies where Vitamin D was compared with a placebo and they examined the effect of Vitamin D in the prevention of acute respiratory tract infections such as colds, flu, bronchitis and pneumonia. In their analysis,which involved over 10,000 people in double-blind studies, the researchers discovered that Vitamin D supplementation is useful in preventing acute respiratory tract infection, particularly with people who are very deficient in Vitamin D. 
#7 . Vitamin D Can Reduce Inflammation
Individuals who are deficient in Vitamin D are at risk of inflammatory diseases such as type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and inflammatory bowel disease. Here, what Vitamin D3 does is lower inflammation risk associated with specific age-related disorders. Vitamin D is regarded as a critical component for strong, healthy bones throughout an individual's life. For many people, Vitamin D supplementation is important to reach the recommended levels that can then help prevent the development of inflammatory disorders. 
#8 . Higher Vitamin D Levels May be Related to Lower Cancer Incidence
The National Cancer Institute points to a possible connection between Vitamin D and cancer risk. Experimental evidence of studies of cancer cells and of tumors in mice has been found to illustrate several activities that can possibly slow or prevent cancer progression, including reduced cancer cell growth, faster cell death, and a reduction in the formation of tumor blood vessels. Numerous epidemiologic studies have likewise shown that individuals with higher Vitamin D intakes or higher D levels have reduced risks of colorectal cancer. To fully understand how Vitamin D3 works in this case as well as the effects of Vitamin D on cancer, researchers have embarked on larger randomized trials to investigate the potential role of the D Vitamin in preventing cancer.