Vitamin D3 Vs Calcium
Disclaimer: This content has been produced purely for informational and educational purposes only and is never intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical guidelines including diagnosis, advice, and treatment.
The human body needs vital nutrients and minerals to function properly. Vitamin D3 and calcium are two major elements that can make or break the human body, particularly in terms of bone and teeth health. While both of these elements offer several similar advantages to the human body, they are not the same, rather, there are a lot of differences between vitamin D3 vs calcium.
In this article, we’ll be exploring vitamin D3 vs calcium on the basis of their properties, functions, benefits, and therapeutic uses. But before we get into the comparison of the health benefits of vitamin D3 vs calcium, it’s important to learn the basics of both nutrients a little bit more. So, let’s get started.
Table of contents
- What is vitamin D3?
- What is calcium?
- Vitamin D3 vs calcium: properties, functions, and benefits
- Vitamin D3 vs calcium: therapeutic uses
- Final words
What is vitamin D3?
While vitamin D has many forms such as vitamin D1, D2, and D3, vitamin D3 or otherwise known as cholecalciferol is the most potent form among them.
The human body can synthesize vitamin D3 from cholesterol in the skin when it is exposed to sunlight through a chemical reaction with UVB radiation. Small amounts are also naturally present in foods, especially animal foods such as egg yolk, beef liver, lichen, cod liver oil, and some fatty fish species like mackerel, tuna, sardines, and salmon.
Many people find it hard to get enough vitamin D3 from sunlight and foods alone, vitamin D3 is also available as supplements in various forms such as capsules, liquid drops, and softgels.
What is calcium?
Calcium is an important mineral that is the key component of bones and teeth. It is considered the most common metal found in the human body. The human body cannot make calcium on its own, so people must obtain calcium through diets or supplements.
The most of calcium that the body needs comes from dairy products such as milk, cheese, and yogurt. Other sources of calcium include green vegetables such as spinach and broccoli. Certain protein- and fat-rich foods such as dry fruits, legumes, and seafood also contain considerable amounts of calcium.
Calcium is also available in various supplementary forms including tablets, capsules, and liquids. People who do not get enough calcium through their diets can consider taking calcium supplements as well.
Vitamin D3 vs calcium: properties, functions, and benefits
Vitamin D3 has a vital role in a whole range of important bodily functions. It shows significant anti-inflammatory effects on the body that promote and protect human health in many ways.
The kidney and liver convert vitamin D3 into its usable forms. Then it enters the bloodstream and circulates throughout the body. It helps the body absorb several essential micronutrients and minerals such as calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium and hold onto them at a healthy level, all of which are vital for healthy bones and teeth.
Vitamin D3 influences cell growth and development and also plays an important role in the immune and neuromuscular systems.
Here are some of the most common benefits of vitamin D3:
Benefits of vitamin D3
- Vitamin D3 helps the body absorb phosphorus and calcium and to keep their levels in a healthy state
- Along with calcium and phosphorus, vitamin D3 plays a key role in building bones as well as keeping them strong
- It assists muscle growth and development
- Promotes mood and mental health
- Improves immune response
- Lowers inflammation and its associated symptoms
- Improves cardiovascular functions
On the other hand, calcium is crucial in the physiology and biochemistry of the human body. The most prevalent function of calcium is the formation of bones and teeth. Around 90% of total calcium content remains in the bones and teeth and the remaining 1% remains in the blood and other tissues.
Calcium plays a vital role in several cellular pathways such as signal transduction pathways and neurotransmitter release. Calcium is also vital for muscle contraction, fertilization, and even for the maintenance of cell membranes.
In addition, calcium also assists the production and function of the blood cells and plays vital roles in the circulatory as well as digestive, and muscular systems.
Let’s take a look at some of the most common benefits of calcium:
Benefits of calcium
- Calcium plays a key role in the formation of bones and teeth
- It also plays a critical role in regulating muscle contraction and thus helps the heart to beat properly
- Supports the circulatory system particularly in transporting nutrients throughout the body
- Helps keep the pH levels balanced
- Supports digestion and may help assist in maintaining body weight
Vitamin D3 vs calcium: therapeutic uses
The deficiency of vitamin D is linked to a range of health complications such as softening of bones, abnormal growth of teeth, and various pregnancy and birth complications. Therefore, supplementation with vitamin D3 has been found highly beneficial to treat and prevent diverse health conditions related to its deficiency.
Therapeutic uses of vitamin D3
- Vitamin D3 is widely used to prevent and treat rickets in children and osteomalacia in adults as well as other bone disorders
- It is also used along with calcium to prevent and treat osteoporosis (bone loss)
- Since it helps the body absorb phosphorus and calcium, it is used to treat low levels of phosphorus and calcium and conditions that are caused by them
- It might be used in kidney diseases
- It hugely helps to reduce pregnancy complications such as preeclampsia and preterm birth
(to learn more also read our article: Vitamin D3 for Pregnancy)
On the other hand, calcium is the most prevalent therapeutic agent to treat and prevent bone disorders such as osteoporosis and osteopenia. But it has several other therapeutic uses as well.
Therapeutic uses of calcium
- Calcium is mainly used to prevent and treat bone disorders such as osteomalacia, osteoporosis, and osteopenia
- It is used in antacids
- It is used to keep potassium, phosphorus, and magnesium levels in check
- It is also used to regulate and treat high blood pressure
- Calcium is used as a weight loss aid as well
- It might be used to treat PMS symptoms and certain types of cancer
There is truly no reason to raise a contradiction of vitamin D3 vs calcium as both are equally important for overall health and staying strong in the long run. They work synergistically in the body to keep various disorders away, particularly those related to their deficiencies. Check with your healthcare provider to determine your safety and best dose prior to including vitamin D3 and calcium in your supplementation plan.
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