Amritsar, February 19, 2020: In an attempt to bring attention to Vitamin D deficiency with the significance of food fortification, the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Guru Nanak Dev University organized an Academic Lecture on Vitamin D deficiency and Risk of Heart disease.
With constructive discussions around strategies for addressing the concern about Vitamin D deficiency among children, adolescents, women of child-bearing age and elderly, various research students and faculty members of different departments joined the discussion. The program was to give awareness about the causes of Vitamin-D deficiency and remedial measures to be taken to avoid such deficiency.
The session started with a welcome speech by Dr. Preet Mohinder Singh Bedi, Head of Pharmaceutical Science department. Dr. Bedi said the rising incidence of Vitamin ‘D’ Deficiencies (VDD), is a serious concern for our country with an occurrence of 70%–100% in the general population.
Vitamin D or the sunshine vitamin is naturally synthesized by the action of sunlight on human skin but even in a tropical country like India, with abundant sunlight through the year, Vitamin D deficiency is highly prevalent.
Vitamin D helps the body to absorb calcium, the lack of which can lead to calcium deficiency. Vitamin D deficiency causes the inhibition of calcification of bones that result in weak bones and physical deformation. Fish and fish products are good food sources of Vitamin D but the diet does not provide an adequate amount of the vitamin.
Inadequate sun exposure also negates the potential benefits of plentiful sunshine for the synthesis of Vitamin D in human bodies.
Many factors can contribute to Vitamin D deficiency such as overuse of sunscreen, wearing clothes that cover most of the skin, working inside all day in an air-conditioned atmosphere, etc.
Dr. Davendra K Agrawal, Senior Vice President for Research & Biotechnology from Western University of Health Sciences, California, USA, who has made numerous contributions to the field of the biochemistry, physiology, metabolism, and photobiology of Vitamin D for human nutrition, graced the occasion to deliver the special lecture.
He mentioned that the main reasons for Vitamin-D deficiency are: skin not being exposed to sunlight and insufficient intake of food like fish, milk egg, etc. Later he explained the remedial actions to be taken. As part of remedial actions, he suggested having a sufficient intake of food containing vitamin-D. In the interactive session, he has clarified the doubts raised by the audience.
At the end of the session, Dr. Balbir Singh thanked the resource person for throwing light on the very important health issue and presented her with a token of appreciation.