Vitamin D is a crucial component in your body and a form of fat-soluble vitamin. Getting enough of this nutrient helps to build your bone and supports cellular growth. You can secure enough vitamin D through sunshine, fortified foods, and supplements.
But while this nutrient benefits your body, it can also lead to side issues such as constipation.
Vitamin D can cause constipation if you consistently consume too much of this nutrient. As with every good component, it’s crucial to apply it moderately and ensure you don’t overwork your system.
If you have stomach discomfort or strange bowel problems, you possibly have consumed much vitamin D. You may need to undergo a blood test to assess whether you have excessive vitamin D in your system.
In some cases, excessive vitamin D levels may trigger kidney or mental issues.
This makes it important to use vitamin D adequately. Abusing the nutrient doesn’t benefit your system.
This article will discuss the complications of using too much sunshine vitamin. Have you been contemplating the common question, “can vitamin D cause constipation?” Continue reading to find the answer to all your questions.
Vitamin D and constipation
Irrespective of vitamin D's benefits, evidence has shown that the nutrient may harm the body when it’s too much.
No doubt, it’s crucial to prioritize bone development and a functioning immune system. This is why health professionals advise against insufficient vitamin D levels in the body.
Reports suggest that about 40% of US adults have low vitamin D levels.
Globally, about 1 billion people suffer from vitamin D deficiency. This may account for why some people consume vitamin D at dangerous levels.
However, this often further complicates the problem instead of solving it. For vitamin D to become toxic to the body, it must have exceeded 100 nanograms (ng) per ml. When it reaches this stage, the person in question has hypervitaminosis.
Because this is way above the 30-60 ng/ml recommendation, the vitamin D levels would be toxic. People often reach this stage when they consume artificial vitamin D supplements without care or professional advice.
In 2020, a woman was diagnosed with dangerous vitamin D levels after consuming 10,000 IU daily for numerous years.
Another case report put a 56-year-old woman’s vitamin D intake at 130,000 IU per day for over a year. When diagnosed, the vitamin level was at 265 ng/ml.
Elevated calcium levels
Your blood calcium levels may skyrocket if you consume excessive vitamin D. This becomes potentially dangerous if you pay no attention to the symptoms you may experience. These symptoms are closely associated with hypercalcemia signs.
Constipation is one symptom you’ll experience when vitamin D has triggered high blood calcium levels in your body. Other symptoms include:
- Vomiting, stomach pain, digestive distress, nausea
- Appetite loss
- Dizziness, confusion, fatigue
Typical calcium levels in your body system should be between 8.5 - 10.8 mg/dL. But this increases rapidly following the consumption of vitamin D megadoses.
A 2015 case report detailed a man who consumed 50,000 IU of vitamin D over 5 months and was diagnosed with hypercalcemia-related symptoms.
Events of vitamin D and constipation have caused healthcare experts to assess the relationship between these two. Using spearman’s test, a select set of screened patients were grouped based on sex and age, alongside other useful metrics.
The study sought to test whether vitamin D impacted a patient’s likelihood of experiencing intestinal motility disorders. It found that the groups with intestinal motility disorders had high vitamin D levels. The affected patients exhibited the following symptoms:
- Abdominal pain
This further highlights how vitamin D affects a person’s quality of life when overused. A great reason why it’s advisable to take natural supplements and follow professional advice simultaneously.
Hydration is great for health maintenance generally. You run a risk of constipation when dehydrated for a long time. Since water helps stools soften and pass out seamlessly, it helps to have a great water intake level.
Therefore, a great tip to deal with constipation is to stay dehydrated. If you’re showing symptoms of vitamin D overdose via constipation, consider taking 25g minimum of water daily. This will improve your stool frequency and offer you some ease.
Soften up with supplements
People tend to consider laxatives when dealing with constipation. However, other ways exist to keep yourself in shape and in good condition. You can soften up with supplements by choosing the right supplements to maintain adequate vitamin D levels.
An organic vitamin D3 with 10,000 IU is a great way to soft pedal and moderate your vitamin D intake. The supplement offers maximum absorption without leading to an overdose that could harm your body system.
It’s also potent in superfoods, making it easy to help you maximize your vitamin D absorption. Additionally, it has no harmful fillers, as the formula is gluten-free and has been tested for potency and purity.
Will D3 cause constipation?
When overused, vitamin D3 can cause constipation. Vitamin D3 is a vitamin D form. It is the vitamin the body produces when it receives sunlight exposure.
The close counterpart to this vitamin form is vitamin D2. However, vitamin D2 comes from plant sources, while D3 derives from animal sources.
Since vitamin D3 is generated when the body hits the sunlight, it’s impossible to get overdosed through sun exposure. Your body will regulate the production of vitamin D3 your produces under sunlight.
Similarly, you’ll likely not get a vitamin D overdose from food. Often, this megadose happens while taking supplements.
You may be down with constipation when you consume vitamin D supplements in dangerous doses. This has happened in several cases, so you may want to avoid it by only using vitamin D supplements with professional assistance.
How vitamin D may affect bowel movements
Vitamin D may affect bowel movements in different ways. Since its excessive use causes constipation, you’ll likely struggle with stooling. Additionally, your stool frequency may increase even when you use a stool softener or other solutions.
Experts consider metrics such as breath tests, wireless motility analysis, and colonic transit time to assess how vitamin D affects bowel movements.
Intestinal motility disorder is often found in patients with constipation.
Additionally, if you have constipation from vitamin D, you may experience defecation disorder overlapping with slow transit constipation.
Factors that may increase the risk of vitamin D-related constipation
Different factors contribute to increasing the risk of vitamin D-related constipation. Not everyone with excessive vitamin D intake will experience constipation, as your circumstances may determine your susceptibility.
Let’s examine some of these factors.
Vitamin D parathyroid hormone levels measurement
To determine your risk level for constipation after taking vitamin D, a crucial component to evaluate is your vitamin D parathyroid hormone levels. Your healthcare professional can check this using a blood test.
The doctor will draw your blood using a needle and send the sample to a lab.
The parathyroid hormone helps to control your calcium and vitamin D levels. Therefore, you may be at risk for vitamin D-related constipation if the hormone is not operating optimally.
Characteristics of patients with intestinal motility disorders
A patient’s characteristics are crucial to assessing the risk of vitamin D-related constipation. Your healthcare professional will prepare a questionnaire to evaluate the quality of your life and other psychological factors.
The result from this test will also determine your self-report health status. Ultimately, quality of life matters in determining these risks.
Definition of functional chronic constipation
Lifestyle and eating factors are useful elements to consider when assessing constipation risk. A constipating patient would be asked about any cause of chronic functional constipation or lifestyle decisions the doctor should know.
The answers to these questions will inform the doctor’s approach.
Risk factors associated with intestinal motility disorders
Intestinal motility disorders have different risk factors, although it’s difficult to pinpoint the exact cause. Some of these factors include autoimmune disorders, slow motility, diarrhea, bloating, and of course, constipation.
Consider visiting a healthcare professional when you experience these simultaneously.
Diagnosing and treating vitamin D-related constipation
Diagnosing vitamin D-related constipation requires undergoing a test to know your blood calcium levels. When overdosing on vitamin D, you may start experiencing symptoms such as constipation.
However, you must take a test or speak with a professional to ascertain the truth.
If your test shows excessive vitamin D in your blood, you must take steps to restore your blood levels to adequate levels. This is because hypercalcemia can be dangerous and life-threatening. Some symptoms you’ll experience include weakness, constipation, and diarrhea.
You may also experience excessive thirst that could adversely affect your mental consciousness. To ensure these symptoms don’t worsen into kidney complications, high blood pressure, or hearing loss, speaking with a healthcare professional is important.
The predictable next step is that you’ll need to stop all supplement intake. Eliminating the source of vitamin D in your body will help ensure you don’t increase your blood calcium levels. Then your doctor will prescribe things you can consume to rectify your blood levels.
You may also need to reduce your sun exposure. This way, your body doesn’t get to produce vitamin D naturally. If your condition isn’t chronic, you can consider moderating your vitamin intake instead of eliminating it completely.
Suppose you consumed over 50,000 IU daily before diagnosis; you could get on a 5,000 - 10,000 IU. This ensures your body receives just the amount of vitamin D it needs without compromising health.
Dealing with constipation will require you to fill up with fiber and stay hydrated. Consuming adequate water and stacking up on fiber will help you soften the stools and increase your frequency. This eases your system and allows you to have some comfort.
Are there other side effects of taking vitamin D?
Constipation is not the only side effect of consuming too much vitamin D. Some other side effects include swelling, pain, nausea, and anxiety. The complications could even worsen, potentially leading to hearing loss, kidney failure, and high blood pressure.
You should also note that excessive vitamin D dosage could be harmful even when you don’t experience symptoms. Often, vitamin D doesn’t lead to harmful symptoms immediately. It takes months or even years to build up.
Reports exist of people who only realized they have vitamin D toxicity years after they started their intake. Since vitamin D’s harmful effects are complex, you should stay within the recommended dosage. Large doses could affect you in ways you can’t yet understand.
To stay safe, stick with the 4,000 IU prescription if you won’t consult a doctor. You may want to consult your health professional if you take a supplement with higher doses. Additionally, it’s crucial to take tests often to determine your blood levels.
Let’s examine further some other side effects of excessive vitamin D
Affected mental consciousness
Aside from constipation, vitamin D toxicity can also alter a person’s mental status. These often start with depression, confusion, and psychosis. This makes it a serious situation anyone should address accordingly.
Some extreme cases have resulted in a coma. Vitamin D toxicity can cause you to act strangely by triggering effects like agitation and confusion.
In one of the aforementioned cases, the patient accidentally consumed 200,000 IU of vitamin D and later showed signs of altered mental consciousness.
These extreme cases could leave the patient agitated for a couple of days, and such a person may need to be hospitalized.
However, these symptoms will likely improve gradually as the blood calcium levels return to normalcy. This may take many days to happen.
Kidney complications may also result from vitamin D toxicity. A patient may suffer kidney failure because excessive vitamin D increases calcium levels, causing too much urination. This reduces the amount of water in the body and could calcify the kidneys.
Additionally, hypercalcemia may constrict the blood supply to the kidney, affecting the organ’s operations. If the kidney doesn’t work adequately, it may gradually fail. Reports have documented instances of near-kidney failure happening due to vitamin D toxicity.
Similarly, vitamin D deficiency may also affect the kidney. Therefore, you must always ensure you don't have too much calcium in your body.
General body weakness
Another common side effect of excessive vitamin D is general body weakness. When you start showing symptoms of vitamin D overdose, you may experience pain, swelling, nausea, and anxiety. All this would affect your general health and disposition towards your daily activities.
This general body weakness may affect your productivity level. It may also cause irritation since you likely won’t enjoy your body during this period.
The importance of vitamin D for overall health
Vitamin D is an essential component of a functioning body system. Practically all body cells have a vitamin D receptor, indicating this nutrient's importance to various body parts.
Although vitamin D primarily supports bone formation, the component benefits the body in many other ways.
You may experience immune dysfunction if your body lacks vitamin D. The nutrient supports your immune system, bowel functionalities, and general mental health. It also helps with blood sugar regulation and weight management.
Let’s run through some benefits of vitamin D for overall health.
Vitamin D strengthens your body against diseases
Maintaining adequate levels of vitamin D may help you fight diseases. You could reduce the risk of sclerosis by ensuring you have a balanced rate of calcium in your blood. By improving your health, the nutrient strengthens your productivity rate.
Low vitamin levels could also make you susceptible to heart disease. You increase your chances of heart failure and hypertension when you don’t take in enough vitamin D. Vitamin D could also contribute to fighting off flu and severe diseases.
After all, a recent report indicated low levels of vitamin D contributed to respiratory distress syndrome.
Additionally, improved vitamin D levels support your immune health, making it convenient to avoid infections such as arthritis and autoimmune diseases.
Vitamin D may support weight loss
Increasing your vitamin D levels to an optimal status may help you lose weight more quickly. Vitamin D contributes to this journey by improving calcium intake.
A study disclosed that obese people who consumed optimal vitamin D supplements recorded more weight loss results. Instead of following just a diet plan, including vitamin D intake in your routine may accelerate your weight loss journey.
It’s important to note the study draws a relationship between moderate vitamin D intake and weight. It doesn’t conclude that vitamin D directly causes weight loss.
Vitamin D provides strength and reduces tiredness
Different reasons contribute to general tiredness and fatigue. You may assume you get tired quickly because of your routine. However, it’s possible you’re lacking vitamin D. Optimal vitamin D levels may help you fight fatigue.
A study concluded that vitamin D deficiency was the cause of fatigue in 480 adults. Since vitamin D deficiency isn’t visible, it’s convenient to overlook it for other factors such as insomnia, depression, and stress.
Several studies report that supplementing vitamin D levels could improve body strength in relation to fatigue.
Vitamin D may fight back and bone pain
Experiencing bone or back pain may quickly be tied to many symptoms. But it could be that you have low levels of vitamin D. Vitamin D supports bone health by increasing your calcium levels. This strengthens your bone and allows you not to feel pain quickly.
A review of people with muscle pain and arthritis found that all patients had low vitamin D levels. Focusing on optimal vitamin D levels can be all you need to not experience bone pain.
Furthermore, inadequate vitamin D levels may also impede the speed at which your wounds heal. A slow healing process can be linked to your vitamin D status since this nutrient provides your body with crucial components to form new skin.
A study found that low vitamin D levels compromised the healing prospects of some dental patients.
Additionally, because vitamin D helps your body with maximum absorption, the component is useful for preventing bone loss. Inadequate calcium levels could cause low bone mineral density. Women and old people tend to be at risk concerning this.
Taking adequate vitamin D may be a great way to protect your bone and improve bone mineral density. This will improve fracture risk and strengthen bone development.
Are there other vitamins that might contribute to constipation?
Although vitamin D may cause constipation if you take it excessively, some other components could also lead to the same result. Therefore, you can’t always link constipation to excessive vitamin D intake. Other vitamins, such as iron and calcium, may cause gastrointestinal problems.
You may experience constipation due to iron. Digesting iron can be difficult, a common factor leading to constipation. If you experience this, you may need a stool softener to deal with this situation.
Although some people experience no issues taking calcium, this component may cause constipation, stomach cramps, and bloating. Therefore, if you’re taking calcium, you should understand you may experience stomach distress.
It also helps to know your body well with these nutrients. This will ensure you know what upsets your stomach and otherwise. It also enables you to moderate your doses.
Takeaway: Choose natural and right vitamin D supplements to avoid constipation
Experiencing constipation from excessive vitamin D supplements can be upsetting. This nutrient is designed to support your body system and not stress you further. Therefore, it’s crucial to choose well to avoid situations of this nature.
At Why Not Natural, you can access 100% natural products manufactured to suit your needs. Get your vitamin B12, vitamin A, Zinc, and more in the way your body craves.
You can avoid constipation and other gastrointestinal issues with the right products and professional advice. Why Not Natural offers just what you need!