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Taking Vitamin D for hypermobility is crucial for most people with the condition. Worldwide, 1 billion people have vitamin D deficiency. Meanwhile, half of the world’s population has an insufficient amount of vitamin D in their bodies.
As vitamin D can worsen the symptoms of hypermobility and add to lethargy, you should add a vitamin D supplement to your diet. Vitamin D is just one of many supplements you should take for hypermobility, so make sure you’re taking them all.
So, let’s find out more about the relationship between vitamin D and hypermobility and explore its effects, potential risks, and recommended daily intake.
Does EDS Cause Vitamin D Deficiency?
Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS) and other hypermobility syndromes don’t directly cause vitamin D deficiency. But they can contribute to it. Here’s how:
- Reduced sun exposure – People with EDS and hypermobility may experience pain and discomfort when moving, which could make it difficult to spend time outside in the sun. Sunlight is a primary source of vitamin D, and reduced exposure can lead to a deficiency.
Another issue is Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS), which affects 9% of people with EDS and can even trigger a sun allergy that forces sufferers to stay out of the sun.
Then, there’s the fact EDS causes temperature regulation problems. The last thing you want to do when you’re hot and sweaty is sit out in the sun – I know I don’t!
- Limited mobility – Hypermobility and EDS cause joint pain and stiffness, making it challenging to exercise or move around. Limited mobility can lead to reduced sun exposure, as well as decreased bone density and vitamin D absorption.
- Nutrient absorption issues – People with EDS may experience digestive issues or malabsorption. These can affect the absorption of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin D.
- Medications – Some medications used to treat EDS or hypermobility, such as anticonvulsants or corticosteroids, can interfere with vitamin D absorption.
- Diet – Individuals with EDS and hypermobility may have dietary restrictions. Some common diets for hypermobility include going gluten-free, veganism, and cutting out dairy. There’s also a connection between hypermobility and picky eating which means affected individuals may limit their intake of vitamin D-rich foods such as fish, eggs, and fortified dairy products.
Is Vitamin D Good for Hypermobility?
Yes, vitamin D is great for hypermobility.
When you have sufficient vitamin D in your body, your energy levels go up, fatigue is reduced, and you feel stronger. 68.8% of people with EDS experience fatigue, so when something as simple as a vitamin D supplement can lower this, it’s worth taking.
Vitamin D also plays a role in maintaining bone health, supporting muscle function, and regulating the immune system. Taking vitamin D can keep your bones strong and healthy. It can also reduce the risk of fractures. Numerous studies have found that EDS and hypermobility increase the incidence of fractures. I’ve experienced this first-hand too.
You may even find that vitamin D helps with joint pain and inflammation. Research has found that low vitamin D levels cause pain and inflammation in the body.
What Are the Risks of Having Vitamin D Deficiency and Hypermobility?
If you’re hypermobile and have vitamin D deficiency, your bones are likely to weaken. You’re then more likely to fracture your bones and develop osteoporosis. One piece of research found that children who were deficient in vitamin D were more likely to fracture from minimal force. As a result, their parents were likely to be wrongly accused of child abuse.
Supplements for children with vitamin D deficiency are available. It’s best to speak to your doctor first if you suspect that your child isn’t getting enough vitamin D.
The other risks of being hypermobile and vitamin D deficient are:
- Feeling more fatigued than usual
- Bone pain that doesn’t ease with rest
- Excessive joint pain
- More muscle pain than you usually experience
- Being in a constant bad mood
- Low energy
- Falling ill often with infections, such as colds and viruses
- Feeling anxious
- Being irritable and not nice to be around
- Putting weight on
- Experiencing hair loss – alopecia areata is common when vitamin D levels are low. If it’s not treated quickly, scarring can occur which will prevent regrowth.
- Developing rickets (in children)
Does Vitamin D Deficiency Cause Bone Cracking?
Vitamin D deficiency itself does not directly cause bone cracking. However, cracking may occur when you’re deficient in this important nutrient.
Bone cracking shouldn’t be confused with hypermobility-related subluxations. Subluxations usually cause pain and popping and clicking noises. Although, cracking noises are possible too.
Bone cracking is a sign that your bones are weak. This may be because you’re not getting enough vitamin D. Simple solutions include getting outside in the sun more frequently and taking supplements.
Can Low Vitamin D Cause Severe Joint Pain?
Joint pain and hypermobility are common. But when you add in low vitamin D levels, your joint pain can rocket.
Vitamin D helps to regulate the absorption and utilization of calcium and phosphorus, two essential minerals for maintaining strong and healthy bones.
When the body doesn’t have enough vitamin D, it can’t absorb calcium and phosphorus effectively, which can lead to weakened bones and joints. This can cause joint pain and stiffness.
Vitamin D also has anti-inflammatory properties. When vitamin D levels are low, inflammation in the body increases which leads to pain, swelling, and stiffness. can lead to increased inflammation in the body.
Does Vitamin D Help with Joint Pain?
Research shows that vitamin D helps joint pain. One study found that people with osteoarthritis (a condition common with hypermobility) who supplemented with vitamin D experienced less joint pain.
How to Increase Vitamin D naturally?
Spending time in the sun isn’t your only way to increase your vitamin D levels naturally. Although, this is a good method. If you do do this, make sure you apply sunscreen to prevent your skin from burning.
Other natural ways to get a vitamin D boost are:
- Eat Vitamin D-rich foods – Include healthy foods in your diet that are high in Vitamin D such as fatty fish (salmon, tuna, and mackerel), egg yolks, and cheese.
- Take supplements – Vitamin D supplements are an easy way to increase your Vitamin D levels. Be sure to talk to your doctor about the appropriate dosage for you.
- Use fortified foods – Some foods, such as milk, orange juice, and cereals, are fortified with Vitamin D. Check the labels of the products to see if they contain Vitamin D.
- Exercise regularly – Exercise can help increase your Vitamin D levels naturally. Studies have shown that regular physical activity can increase your Vitamin D levels over time.
- Maintain a healthy weight – Being overweight or obese can reduce your body’s ability to produce and use Vitamin D. Maintaining a healthy weight can help increase your Vitamin D levels naturally.
How Much Vitamin D Can I Safely Take a Day?
The recommended daily intake of vitamin D varies depending on age, health status, and individual needs. Generally, adults and children with hypermobility should aim for 600-800 International Units (IU) of vitamin D per day.
How long does it take to recover from vitamin D deficiency?
If you’re in extreme pain and are feeling tired because of your hypermobility and vitamin D deficiency, you’re sure to want to increase your vitamin D levels fast.
The extent of your vitamin D deficiency will play a role in how long it takes to recover. Similarly, the amount of vitamin D you start to add to your body needs to be factored in too.
It’ll take at least a few weeks for your vitamin D levels to start to rise once you start taking a supplement and following the suggestions above. You should slowly start to see an improvement in your pain levels and fatigue from then. Within 3 to 4 months, a significant improvement should be noticed.
Discovering the benefits of vitamin D for hypermobility is a vital step toward managing symptoms and improving your overall quality of life. Adequate vitamin D intake supports bone health, reduces joint pain, and increases energy. So, why not try taking vitamin D supplements today?