As the days get longer, we have more opportunities to get out in the sun. And in addition to boosting our moods and encouraging us to exercise, more sunlight is especially good for our bones. At ChiroCareLA in Glendale, we don’t just treat symptoms. We help our patients maintain holistic wellness, and that means educating the public about the connection between sunlight, Vitamin D, and preventing hair fractures in the vertebrae.
Our bones require calcium as their basic building material, and our muscles need calcium to function properly. However, an excessive amount of calcium can be harmful, so our bodies are only able to absorb it when they receive a chemical signal from Vitamin D. This vitamin is produced in our skin when it is exposed to sunlight, so we need sunlight in order to build our bones and muscles. Bones are constantly breaking down and rebuilding, but without enough calcium, they can’t rebuild fast enough to keep up with their rate of resorption, and become brittle. When a person’s bones resorb so much tissue they take on a honeycomb-like appearance, they are suffering from osteoporosis, and even ordinary jostling may cause such weak bones to develop fractures.
Exposure to sunlight has to be direct to trigger the production of Vitamin D; getting it through a glass window is of little help. However, some foods naturally contain Vitamin D or calcium, and others are fortified with it. Among those are fish, dairy products, cruciferous vegetables, and some breakfast cereals and orange juice. Most people need to be exposed to sunlight for fifteen minutes at a time at least three times a week to produce enough Vitamin D, but darker skinned people and people over the age of sixty-five may need more. People outside of tropical regions are unlikely to produce enough Vitamin D to absorb too much calcium, but it is possible if they are using supplements unsupervised. If you begin suffering from back pain and we find you are suffering from osteoporosis, we’ll help you to find safe pain-relief therapies, including anti-inflammatory treatments such as low level laser therapy.