Vitamin D Benefits

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Vitamin D is produced in the skin in response to ultraviolet light exposure however dancers spend long periods of time indoors so have limited exposure to sunlight, as a result they are often vitamin D deficient which can lead to injuries and underperforming. The importance of vitamin D should not be overlooked as ‘Vitamin D receptor sites have been identified in virtually every tissue within the body’. Vitamin D is important in aiding the absorption of calcium which improves bone strength, muscle contraction and blood clotting. Vitamin D therefore both helps prevent injury and improves vertical jump and muscle strength. It is also possible to get vitamin D from your diet for example foods such as fatty fish, egg yolks, and fortified foods …show more content…
Calcium levels are kept constant in the blood by parathyroid hormone. The level of calcium in the blood controls the amount of parathyroid hormone that is released by the parathyroid glands. If the level of calcium in the blood decreases, more PTH is secreted. This initiates the removing of calcium from bones to correct the low concentration in the blood. The overuse of this method can result in the development of diminished bone density, osteopenia, leading to osteoporosis. This is therefore another reason vitamin D is so important to or diet as its help in absorbing calcium will reduce the risk of diseases such as osteoporosis. Osteoporosis is a weakening of the bones making breaks much more likely, this would be a major problem for a dancer and prevent them training and performing. It also explains why stress fractures are such a common injury in the dance …show more content…
Vitamin D increases the size and number of fast twitch muscle fibers. Fast twitch muscle contract quicker and are used for short bursts of energy for example sprinting or jumping. this is useful for a dancer as during training energy is used for short amounts at a time since short exercises are done in class rather than a long performance daily. Since vitamin D also improves calcium absorption it also has a direct influence of muscle power as contractions are controlled by calcium causing nervous impulses. Vitamin D could influence muscular strength by modifying the ‘transportation of calcium in the sarcoplasmic reticulum by increasing the efficiency or number of calcium binding sites involved in muscle contraction’. This has only been examined in rat models however so there is little evidence for the

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