Many researchers have observed a link between vitamin D deficiency and obesity-related complications. There was a study conducted with 400 overweight individuals with low vitamin D levels who were placed on a calorie-restricted diet. These people were divided into three groups, group one took no vitamin D supplements, while groups two and three took a daily vitamin D supplement. After six months, groups two and three lost more weight and had smaller waistlines than group one.
This data proved that vitamin D supplementation may aid in weight loss and enhance the benefits of healthy eating habits. Researchers suggest anyone who is trying to lose weight should have their vitamin D levels tested, in addition to eating a balanced diet.
Another study suggested that vitamin D supplementation dosage may depend on body size. Meaning individuals who are considered overweight need more vitamin D in their system than those who are at an average weight. The idea is that the lower the body weight, the lower vitamin D requirements. One study also found that small amounts of weight loss led to an increase in vitamin D levels.
More recent studies have shown that vitamin D can reduce the formation of new fat cells, and can suppress the storage of fat cells. Interestingly, vitamin D can increase levels of serotonin in the body, which affects the regulation of everything from mood to sleep. Healthy serotonin levels can also help manage a balanced appetite and reduce body weight.
Although, there are several theories regarding the link between low vitamin D and being overweight, it is clear increasing your levels can support your weight loss journey. Studies have calculated about 50% of people worldwide are vitamin D deficient. Due to the fact that vitamin D does not naturally occur in many foods, health professionals suggest sunbathing without sunscreen for at least 10-30 minutes a few times a week. However, for the people who live further away from the equator may not be able to meet this requirement, it is highly recommended to take a high-quality vitamin D supplement.