Vitamin D

Vitamin D offers numerous benefits to our skin as well as our overall health. However, it is unfortunate that different from other vitamins like vitamin E, this vitamin is often neglected, notwithstanding the fact that it is vital in tackling serious skin conditions like psoriasis.

Vitamin D dissolves in fat and is a potent antioxidant as well as an anti-carcinogenic agent. This vitamin is found in various forms - the most active form being calcitriol. Once vitamin D is produced by the body or ingested, the liver and kidneys work on it to convert this vitamin into any active form which can be used by our body.

Health benefits

Our skin and vitamin D have an intimate relation primarily because of the manner in which this vitamin is produced. At the same time, vitamin D offers specific benefits to our skin.

Dermatologists across the globe extensively use vitamin D for treating psoriasis. Vitamin D has a vital role in the metabolism as well as growth of skin cells. Hence, it has been found that this nutrient is effective for treating itching and flaking, which are among the most widespread skin problems suffered by people around the world. A number of studies undertaken to explore the health benefits of vitamin D have hinted that non-prescription or OTC vitamin D creams are not very effective in curing psoriasis, as they do not enclose the active derivative of vitamin D. In fact, only the prescription cream and/ or supplement varieties contain the active vitamin D derivative. Usually, it requires many weeks of continuous treatment to treat the symptoms related to psoriasis. Different from the creams containing steroids, vitamin D creams have very few unwanted side effects. This is a major advantage of using prescription vitamin D creams.

People suffering from psoriasis may also get relief from UVB treatments. This is primarily because such treatments produce vitamin D. It is an accepted fact that vitamin D is naturally beneficial for our skin. Apart from this, vitamin D also works as a potent antioxidant and, hence, it can help to prevent the skin's premature aging. At the same time, it also prevents any kind of damage to the skin structure.

Aside from benefiting our overall health, vitamin D also performs an integral role in protecting as well as rejuvenating the skin. Vitamin D, in its active variety, promotes growth, metabolism and repair of the skin cells. At the same time, this nutrient works to optimize the immune system of the skin and facilitates the destruction of free radicals, which are often responsible for premature aging of the skin.

Our body possesses the aptitude to produce vitamin D when exposed to sunlight. However, too much exposure to the sun is harmful as it speeds up the aging process of the skin. When our skin is exposed to the sun for a considerable period of time, it eventually develops sun spots, wrinkles and even the risks of developing cancer increase. It is worth mentioning here that skin color, age, geographic latitude, variations in availability of sunlight during different seasons and even use of sunscreen make it problematic for our body to produce the required amount of vitamin D.

Apart from the skin, various other parts of our body use much of the vitamin D produced by it. It has been found that one's skin loses an estimated 75 percent of its capability to make vitamin D3 from 20 years to 70 years age. Vitamin D3 is actually the metabolic originator of calcitriol.

For optimal skin care, it is not only sufficient to intake the ideal amounts of vitamin D, but one also needs to apply this vitamin topically to protect as well as rejuvenate the skin. This is essential to prevent premature aging of the skin.

These days majority of the people are aware of the significance of maintaining optimal levels of vitamin D in the blood stream, because this nutrient offers several health benefits. However, not many people still understand the functionality of vitamin D in protecting and rejuvenating the skin. The synthesis of vitamin D is a complex process and it yields the active variety of the nutrient, calcitriol, which is a compound similar to hormones in many respects and essential to cell proliferation as well as differentiation. In this way, vitamin D promotes the growth, metabolism and repair of the skin cells. This vitamin helps to mobilize the immune system of our skin and facilitate the elimination of detrimental free radicals that are usually responsible for premature aging.