While there has been a lot of talk around vitamin D deficiency in Indians and the several health risks it poses from bone diseases to mental health illnesses, overdosing on vitamin D supplements can be disastrous for your health too.
Excess of vitamin D in your body can cause vitamin toxicity or hypervitaminosis which can lead to kidney stones, nausea, constipation and increase your risk of bone fractures, heart problems and even cancer.
“Excessive consumption of vitamin D (10,000 IU) supplements daily can lead to risks like vitamin D toxicity, leading to abnormally high levels of calcium in the blood. Symptoms may include kidney stones, nausea, recurrent vomiting, constipation, excessive thirst, excessive urination, confusion and weight loss. It’s been also seen the one who takes high doses of the supplement are in risk of cancer, heart problems, and an increased risk of bone fractures,” says Dr Shreedhar Archik, Senior Consultant, Orthopaedics and Joint Replacement, Global Hospital, Parel, Mumbai.
Vitamin D helps calcium absorption and bone building and is found in fortified milk, fortified juice, fish, egg yolks, red meat and cereal. Recommendation for daily amount of vitamin D for adults from 31 to 70 years age is 600 IU and for above 71 years- 800 IU.
“The main distinction that determines the threat of overdosing is whether a vitamin is fat or water-soluble. Water-soluble vitamins are less likely to cause health risks as they dissolve easily and are not usually absorbed in any body tissues for a long period of time,” says Dr Archik.
Vitamins A, D, E and K are fat-soluble which means that the body can keep them stored within fat deposits for longer period of time, while others are water-soluble essential vitamins.
“People should not in-take excessive dosage of multi-vitamins or vitamin supplements, unless advised by the expert,” concludes the expert.