9 Early Warning Signs Of Vitamin Deficiency

Our body needs vitamins to function properly. Without them, our body begins to show signs of malfunction until it finally gives up completely if it does not get the required nutrients.

We can experience several ailments as a result of our body being deprived of essential nutrients. This issue can be quickly and easily resolved with proper diagnosis and supplementation. 

So let’s explore some signs our body shows when we are deficient in one vitamin or the other. Make sure to look out for these warning signs and take the necessary precautions to prevent vitamin deficiency.

Let’s Start With A Common Sign, Hair Loss! 

Hair loss is a common occurrence for those who are vitamin deficient. In fact, it’s so common that almost 50% of adults suffer from it by the time they are 50 years of age! 

A deficiency in vitamin B3 or niacin can cause hair loss. Niacin deficiency is common if you have a condition called alopecia; alopecia is a disorder that can cause significant hair loss across the body. 

Deficiency in biotin or vitamin B7 is another known cause of hair loss. Taking biotin supplements can help improve vitamin deficiency.. 

If you are looking for foods rich in niacin, try including more leafy greens, nuts, meat, fish, dairy, whole grains, and legumes in your diet.

Vitamin supplements help fight hair loss, especially when combined with other nutrients and minerals like iron and zinc. 

However, nutrient supplements might increase hair loss if you aren’t vitamin deficient.

Talk to your healthcare provider and confirm that you have a deficiency before taking supplements, as it may have unwanted effects on your hair if you decide to self-medicate. 

Mouth Ulcers Are Common If You Are Deficient.

Ulcers in and around your mouth are a sign of vitamin B and mineral deficiency in the body. Studies show that people with a deficiency in vitamins B1 (or thiamine), B2 (or riboflavin), and B6 (pyridoxine) can develop these ulcers.

A riboflavin deficiency can also cause angular cheilitis, which can cause the sides of the mouth to crack and bleed. 

Meat, fish, eggs, dairy, organ meats, legumes, and green and starchy vegetables are rich in thiamine, riboflavin, and pyridoxine.

So the next time you have an ulcer, try including more foods rich in vitamin B in your diet or take a supplement if necessary. 

Poor Vision At Night Is Common.

A deficiency in vitamin A can cause night blindness, where you cannot see clearly at night or in low light. 

Vitamin A is necessary for making a pigment called rhodopsin which is necessary for helping you to see correctly at night. 

If night blindness is left untreated, it can progress into full-blown blindness. 

A vitamin deficiency can lead to the development of white foamy spots in the white part of the eye or the conjunctiva. These spots can be eliminated if vitamin A intake is increased. 

Anyone who thinks they have a vitamin A deficiency should eat dark leafy green vegetables, yellow and orange-colored vegetables, eggs, fish, and organ meats. 

Do not take vitamin A supplements unless you have been diagnosed with a deficiency, as a high accumulation of this vitamin could be toxic.

Vitamin A toxicity can cause nausea, headaches, bone pain, coma, and death if it is severe. 

Try having all your nutrient sources from food sources as they would not lead to toxicity or overdose. 

Dandruff Is Another Tell-tale Sign.

Dandruff affects parts of your body that produce oil. Dandruff mainly occurs on the scalp. 

It’s a very common condition that people can experience either during infancy, puberty, or adulthood, as studies have shown. 

There are several different factors causing dandruff, including a nutrient deficiency and deficiency in vitamin B2, vitamin B3, and vitamin B6. If you are experiencing this condition, you might consider increasing your intake of nutrient-rich foods.

Foods rich in vitamin B2, B3, and B6 are poultry, meat, fish, eggs, dairy, green vegetables, and whole grains. Next time, try dishes made with these food items instead of choosing a burger or pizza to satisfy your hunger. 

Brittle Nails And Hair Indicate A Deficiency. 

Brittle hair or nails can be caused due to a variety of reasons, including a deficiency in vitamin B7 or Biotin. 

Though biotin deficiency is rare, it is possible, and apart from brittle hair or nails, it also has symptoms like muscle cramps, tingling in hands and feet, and chronic fatigue. 

Generally, heavy smokers, alcoholics, pregnant women, and those with Crohn’s disease are at risk of developing a biotin deficiency.

Even eating raw egg whites can cause a biotin deficiency! Raw eggs contain a protein that slows down or prevents biotin absorption in the body. Always cook your eggs before eating them.

Try taking biotin supplements if you have brittle nails or hair, but it’s always better to go for a biotin-rich diet. Foods rich in biotin include broccoli, cauliflower, egg yolks, fish, meat, whole grains, and bananas. 

Go ahead, try these foods if you feel your hair and nails have become brittle and easily break, and see the difference they make. 

Are Your Gums Bleeding?

Bleeding gums are one of the first signs of a vitamin C deficiency and, if not taken seriously, can have serious repercussions. 

Vitamin C plays an essential role in the body as it helps maintain a robust immune system, aids in wound healing, and helps prevent oxidative stress in the body. 

The body cannot produce Vitamin C, the only way to get it is through one’s diet. Vitamin C deficiency is rare in those who have a diet that includes fresh fruits and vegetables.

Studies show that not consuming enough sources of vitamin C for an extended period of time can lead to bleeding gums and tooth loss.  

Prolonged vitamin C deficiency can lead to the disease scurvy, where the immune system begins to malfunction, causes lethargy, and weakens the bones and muscles. 

Vitamin C deficiency can also cause issues like nose bleeds and slow wound healing.

Are You Feeling Sleepy? Tiredness Is An Early Indicator Of Deficiency.

Tiredness or fatigue is often brushed off as a lifestyle disorder; however, it could be a sign of nutrient deficiency.

Because Vitamins help us digest food and absorb energy from the foods that provide us with those vitamins, a lack of vitamins, especially B12, can cause fatigue in human beings. 

Studies also suggest that B12 helps build red blood cells and DNA and promotes neurotransmitter functions.

Severe B12 deficiency can cause memory loss, lack of balance, and numbness in the legs, hands, or feet.

Some good sources of B12 are fish, chicken, milk, and yogurt. So the next time you feel abnormally tired, try having these food items or a B12 supplement and see what difference it makes. 

Aches Are A Sign That You Are Deficient.

In most cases, body aches and pain are mostly understood to be age-related issues. However, your body aches might indicate that you are vitamin D deficient.

Vitamin D is essential for bone health, and a long-term deficiency can lead to a disease called rickets, where the bones become soft, deformed, and painful. Vitamin D can prevent diseases such as Osteoporosis. It can even help manage type 1 diabetes and autoimmune conditions also.  

Some common vitamin D deficiency symptoms include fatigue, joint pain, muscle pain and weakness, and respiratory issues. 

Vitamin D is produced when our body is exposed to sunlight yet It is also found in foods such as fish, milk, organ meat, egg yolks, and mushrooms. 

It is also available in the form of a supplement, but it is always best to go for foods rich in vitamins. 

Dry Skin Is A Good Indication Of A Vitamin Deficiency.

Dry skin has many causes, one of them being vitamin A deficiency. Vitamin A plays an important role in the growth and regeneration of skin cells. 

Studies show that not having enough of this nutrient can even cause eczema, a chronic skin condition that causes the skin to be inflamed. A topical medicine containing vitamin A is usually prescribed for its treatment. 

Any deficiency of vitamin A can be cured with vitamin A-rich foods such as green, yellow and orange vegetables, organ meat, fish oil, milk, and eggs. 

Vitamin deficiency can come in several forms, and sometimes some ailments can go unnoticed.

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