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Study: Why vitamin D is essential for athletes

Natriche Immune Sport contains vitamin D3. Vitamin D is important for the growth and maintenance of strong bones and teeth, but it also has many other benefits, including the proper functioning of the muscles.

What is vitamin D?

Vitamin D, also called the “sun vitamin”, is a fat-soluble vitamin. The most important source of vitamin D is sunlight. Because of the UV radiation from the sun on the skin, the body produces vitamin D itself. It is also found in certain fatty fish, such as herring. Vitamin D is also a pro-hormone, it has no hormonal effect of its own, but it is transformed into a hormone by the body.

The two most important forms of the vitamin are vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol) and D3 (cholecalciferol). Vitamin D2 is the vegetable form of vitamin D and cannot be produced by the body and is most effective in some animal species (such as in rats). Vitamin D3 is the form that your body produces after exposure to sunlight. This is also the form in Natriche, because vitamin D3 is absorbed much better by your body and is more effective than vitamin D2.

 

Health benefits of vitamin D:

  • Maintaining strong bones

The body needs vitamin D for strong bones and teeth. It ensures that calcium and phosphorus from food are properly absorbed and recorded in the bones and teeth during growth. In addition, vitamin D is needed to minimize bone loss and to reduce the risk of osteoporosis in later life.

 

  • Increases muscle strength

Recent studies show a link between vitamin D, muscle growth and strength in both adults and the elderly. A recent review investigated the effects of vitamin D on sporty and non-sporty adults. The finding was that the strength in both upper and lower body increased slightly more in those who received vitamin D supplementation than in those who received no supplement. In the same way, various studies investigated how vitamin D influences muscle strength, the risk of falling and the degree of brittleness in the elderly. A large majority of the participants experienced more increase in muscle strength and fewer falls after supplementation, compared to a placebo.

 

  • Improves the immune system

There is strong evidence that vitamin D plays a role in the immune system, or the resistance. The conversion to the active form of vitamin D in the white blood cells ensures so-called “cellular immunity”. This process is initiated by stimulating the production of an antimicrobial protein that makes bacteria harmless. This can prevent that one gets sick.

 

Vitamin D deficiency?

Veel mensen in Nederland hebben een tekort aan vitamine D. De symptomen bij een vitamine D-tekort kunnen per persoon verschillen. De meest voorkomende symptomen zijn:

  • Fatigue
  • Weakness
  • sustaining an injury with a push
  • Pain in joints and muscles even when there is no overload
  • Muscle vibrations or cramps
  • Listlessness
  • Hyperventilation in stress situations
  • Sweating up in the night due to anxiety attacks or nightmares
  • Hypersensitive or bleeding gums

If you think you are deficient in vitamin D, it is certainly advisable to take a supplement that contains vitamin D3. But it is also highly recommended for athletes who have no shortage. Your muscles recover better and faster after a workout and your training plans will not be turned upside down by an unexpected flu or cold.

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References:

  1. Vitamin D, Third Edition by Feldman D, Pike JW, Adams JS. Elsevier Academic Press, 2011.
  2. Effects of vitamin D supplementation on upper and lower body muscle strength levels in healthy individuals. A systematic review with meta-analysis.
  3. Spitz, J. (2014). Super hormoon Vitamine D. Eeserveen: Akasha
  4. Kentz S Willis, Derek T Smith, Kenneth S Broughton, and D Enette Larson-Meyer (2012). Vitamin D status and biomarkers of inflammation in runners.
  5. Heaney, R.P., Recker, R.R., Grote, J., Horst, R.L., & Armas, L.A. (2010). Vitamin D3 is more potent than vitamin D2 in humans. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 96(3), E447-E452.
  6. Tomlinson P.B., Joseph C., Angioi M. (2015). Effects of vitamin D supplementation on upper and lower body muscle strength levels in healthy individuals. A systematic review with meta-analysis.
  7. Vitamin D: a review on its effects on muscle strength, the risk of fall, and frailty. Halfon M., Phan O., Teta D. (2015)
  8. A higher dose of vitamin d reduces the risk of falls in nursing home residents: a randomized, multiple-dose study. Broe K.E., Chen T.C., Weinberg J., Bischoff-Ferrari H.A., Holick M.F., Kiel D.P.
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