There are a number of vitamin D benefits for men. Lately, vitamin D has been the subject of much clinical study. Research shows that vitamin D is not just important for bone health. This vital nutrient also plays a role in supporting healthy muscle development, testosterone levels, and mental health. In this article, learn all about vitamin D and three surprising ways vitamin D benefits men’s health.
What is vitamin D?
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that helps maintain healthy blood levels of calcium and phosphorus. It also supports calcium absorption, which helps build and maintain strong bones.
What are some surprising vitamin D benefits for men?
Vitamin D is well known for its role in bone health. But, did you know that it does so much more to help you stay healthy?
1. Vitamin D is essential for muscle development.
Vitamin D plays an essential role in the development of skeletal muscle, which is the muscle attached to bones that help move the body. Adequate vitamin D is also instrumental in optimizing muscle strength and performance. So, this nutrient is important for everyday exercisers and elite athletes alike to support muscle health and keep you on your A-game.
2. Vitamin D supplementation might support healthy testosterone levels.
The male reproductive tract is known as a tissue for vitamin D. Testosterone (a male hormone) plays a crucial role in bone mass, muscle strength, fat distribution, and even sex drive. Studies have shown that adequate vitamin D intake can support healthy testosterone levels.
3. Vitamin D supplementation may support mental health.
Vitamin D is commonly referred to as the “sunshine vitamin” because your body can make vitamin D with exposure to sunlight. But vitamin D itself may bring a little sunshine to your life – metaphorically, that is. Research suggests that healthy vitamin D levels may help support your overall mental wellbeing and mood.
The current Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) is 15-20 mcg (600-800 IU) per day, but the jury is still out on the optimal daily dose of vitamin D. Some people may require higher doses to maintain healthy vitamin D levels, like those with a higher BMI status, those who take certain medications, or those who have trouble absorbing vitamin D. Doses up to 100 mcg (4,000 IU) are considered safe, but everyone has different vitamin D needs. Consult with your healthcare provider to find out how much vitamin D you need each day.
How do you know if you’re getting enough vitamin D?
Just like there’s not a total consensus on how much vitamin D you need each day, there’s still some disagreement about the optimal vitamin D level. According to the Food and Nutrition Board, 20 ng/ml is considered a healthy vitamin D level. However, most vitamin D experts recommend a vitamin D level of at least 30 ng/mL for overall health. If you’re curious about your vitamin D level, talk with your healthcare provider. They can check your vitamin D level with a simple blood test to find out if you’re getting enough vitamin D.
Vitamin D benefits for men extend far beyond bone health. Healthy vitamin D levels help support healthy muscles, healthy testosterone levels, and even mental health. Talk with your healthcare provider to find out if you would benefit from a high-quality vitamin D supplement.