Vitamin D and Fatigue

Low levels of vitamin D and fatigue are closely related to each other. Chronic fatigue is just one of the symptoms seen in patients who are deficient in vitamin D. Vitamin D deficiency can be described as a condition that occurs when vitamin D levels in blood get too low. This problem is more common than you think. The thing is that most of us don’t know we are deficient in vitamin D, because this condition can remain asymptomatic for a long time. The symptoms will start when your vitamin D levels become extremely low. This is called “severe deficiency” and it is treated with large doses of vitamin D supplements. In most cases, doctors will prescribe D3 supplements to treat severe deficiency.

Vitamin D Deficiency Symptoms

● Osteoporosis
● Muscle weakness
● Muscle pain
● Rickets in children
● Chronic fatigue
● Bone pain
● Depression
● Bone fractures
● General weakness
● Osteomalacia

As you can see, vitamin D deficiency is characterized by non-specific symptoms, some of which are seen in other diseases. This makes it very hard to diagnose. If you experience any of these symptoms, and they become persistent, you need to visit your doctors and undergo a blood test. Vitamin D deficiency can be detected through blood tests; the symptoms are not reliable, because they can be caused by other factors.

Vitamin D and Chronic Fatigue

Chronic fatigue is one of the most common symptoms of low levels of vitamin D. However, this symptom can result from other diseases as well. Therefore, it is very important to visit your doctor for a blood test. If you have other symptoms besides fatigue, you may be seriously deficient in vitamin D. This condition needs to be treated as soon as possible, and you have to take it seriously, before it results in other health problems.

Most patients with vitamin D deficiency have chronic fatigue. In the beginning, people usually think that it is just a temporary problem and they expect it to go away on its own. However, fatigue caused by vitamin D deficiency will not just go away. In fact, it won’t go away until vitamin D levels become normal again.

Do not ignore this symptom. Even if it hasn’t been caused by vitamin D deficiency, you need to find its true cause. Fatigue can impair the quality of your life. This problem should be addressed, the sooner the better.

23 thoughts on “Vitamin D and Fatigue

  1. dani says:

    I have just been told that my vitamin d is at level 9. My doctor has me taking 150000. Per day. This seems really high.

  2. Mary says:

    I have been sooo tired all the time lately. I went for my routine blood work and my vitamin d was only 13! I’m on 4,000 units daily but still feel drained 🙁

  3. Teri says:

    I have been so fatigued this past year, I don’t even want to get out of bed. It doesn’t help that I wake a ton during the night. My vitamin D was 22 and my doctor has me taking 2000 units of D daily. It has been about 6 weeks and I still feel so drained.

  4. Candice says:

    Just reading on Vit. D I have found out A LOT !! I was diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue in 1992. Had to get books & find out for myself what it was. Just recently found out Vit. D was <19 & now know why I've been so tired. Redid blood work & count is still low at 26. Was put on 50000 units 2x a wk. of Vit. D. Now other problems have come up in blood work on liver H 44, & kidney count was low at 42 & should be greater than 60. So I guess at 62 I'll just fall apart & we'll fix 1 problem at a time. ( Was wondering why I was getting tireder (sp) than I had been). And let's throw osteoparsis in the equation. !!!! ….Candice

  5. LAGroove says:

    I had a total Hysterectomy 12/11/12 and thought my extreme fatigue, muscle aches/weakness, foggy brain, weight gain were all due to loss of hormones, possibly Thyroid issues. (I’m not taking HRT or anyting else)Endocronologist just diagnosed me with low Vit D. (22.4), but says my Thyroid is fine, except for a nodule on right side (which she says looks like a cyst that is common and come and go on most people).

    Today, I just took my 2nd Vit D 50,000 unit pill. I’m to take 2/week for 8 weeks. Getting retested in 3 months. Funny, that most of you are only taking 1/week. Not sure why she put me at 2/week. I’m so fatigued at the end of every day, it’s ridiculous. I’m told I need to exercise, but who has the energy for that? I’m glad I can get through a day of work! Praying the Vit D kicks in fast. Seeing a Naturopathic Dr. next who is a hormone specialist.

  6. says:

    Some great points here. I take 2000 to 4000IU of Vitamin D each day, in particular during the winter months, and I’ve found there to be a noticable difference and lack of energy when I don’t take Vitamin D for a few days.

  7. Nila Atkins says:

    After having some blood tests to see how my calcium levels were. I was diagnoised with a vitaming D deficiency. It has been recomended that I take a daily dose of 4,000 IU. I am wondering how long that i will be required to take this amount, before my levels become normal? But after looking up some of the symptoms that can come from being low in the viatmin. I am realizing that as much as i dont want to take another pill as I already take enough Meds as is, that this is one that will make me feel better. And I am suffering from some of the symptoms associated with the deficiency. Such as muscle aches and weakness. And bone pain too. I am tired all the time. Needing to nap in the afternoons and generally dont feel well most of the time. I have also read that this particular vitamin can help with controlling weight. Which is another issue i have. I just hope that I can get some relief ans start to feel like a normal person again soon. Thanks

  8. Mary says:

    Two weeks ago the large city I live in offered medical tests at reduced cost. I am new to Medicare(March) and my long time doctor was just diagnosed with breast cancer again and is not practicing. So when my cousin said she was going to the event, I decided to go with her and have some of the tests run. On a whim I also included the Vitamin D test, cost $35. My doctor has been running the large blood panel test every six months for the last 10 years and everything comes back normal, including thyroid….sugar is 1/100 low of being diabetic. It has been that way for years. Over the last 15 years I have put on 75 pounds and began feeling tired, more and more until I reached a point where I could fall asleep eating a meal, doing household chores and even at the grocery store. Slowly I noticed my legs, knees and hips hurt all the time even my feet and sometimes just a couple of toes. I also have been feeling more depressed. The week before I had the Vit D blood test run, I was so larthargic and depressed with leg pain. I felt so bad and slept so much, it scared me. I knew my depression was overwhelming without a serious cause and I don’t even remember what I did each day. Five days later my test results came, my Vit D level is 16. That same day, I attended a lecture on Vitamin Deficiency and Hormone imbalance. Almost everything the doctor talked about was a symptom that I had been experiencing for years. He talked about how the problem begins with suttle symptoms until someone finally runs the Vit D blood test, saliva tests and other unconventional test that pin point the cause. He made a lot of sense and actually touched on several issues that I had researched throughout the years going through menopause and feeling so horrible. He described my health all the way back and beginning with my extreme periods at the age of 12. All I could think of was that I have been telling doctors for years how awful I felt and all they could tell me was to get out and walk more, lose weight, get more sleep, take this pill and it is all in my head. Unfortunately, his program costs are not covered by insurance plans and run around $6000-11000 for treatment. At 66 years old, money I don’t have.

    At the age of 38 I was an endurance cyclist, rode my bike 23 miles a day, 11 months out of the year in Michigan and took 24 vitamins each day. I never felt better. But, by the time I was 40 I had gone through six major issues in my life ending with major life changes..I gave up cycling and eventually all the extra vitamins. Was this the beginning of physical changes? So today, less than one week after finding out I have low Vitamin D levels, I am angry at all the times I talked to my doctors and they dismissed me as a very active single parent and I am scared. The damage to my heart and other medical concerns…could this have been prevented if I had only had the answers 20 years ago, even 10 years ago. Can I reverse the damage? Would I have enjoyed my life more without limitations if I had suspected the cause years ago.

    I have started researching the issues on the web and was fortunate to borrow five recent published books on hormones and vitamins, from my local library.

    Today, I ask for your help in directing me to the right specialist/doctors that can treat me for hormone imbalance and vitamin deficiency, they are related. I don’t want to waste anymore time. I want my life back. I am open to your experiences and recommendations. Thank you for taking the time to read this, I do appreciate any advice you have to offer. I wish each of you good health.

    I am fortunate to live near the University of Michigan Hospital.

  9. Lovell says:

    Wow!!!! I’m reading all these posts and thinking to myself, alot of people have this issue. I went to my obgyn and was sent for testing for my Vit D and it came back at 12!!!! I didn’t really know what that meant but started doing some research on it. I was told to see my primary who did further testing and put me on 4 pills of 50,000 IU’s. One pill per week for 4 weeks with a refill for another 4 weeks. I was more tired than normal but thought it was because of the weather but I also just didn’t feel myself. I didn’t think i was depressed as I am a mental health therapist and am very familiar with the symptoms. Well, i had my script filled and took my first pill. The very next day it was amazing, I felt like I was a new person and full of life and energy again. I still have 3 weeks and 3 pills to go and the doctor has also recommended that I continue taking an additional over the counter Vit D of 800-1000 IUs. What craziness this has been. Everyone who lives in the mid to northern locations of the US should definately have their Vit D levels checked. It’s quick and easy and worth it since research shows there can be more serious issues that could stem from this problem. Hope this helps someone out there.

  10. Sherry says:

    I just found out after having some test’s done that I have a Vitamin D deficiency. Not sure how severe it is yet. I hope this will explain being ver fatigued and just not being myself.

  11. Shalena says:

    I was told by my OBGyn in Feb. That my vitamin D level was 7%. I have had a constant pain in my shoulder for almost 2 years and I am ALWAYS tired and I have started falling asleep in the middle of the day, whenever I read at night, while watching movies pretty much anytime I allow myself to sit still. I am never completely focused and I just feel foggy. I am only 30 years old and I feel so much older. I was given vitamin d meds to take , I took them and I haven’t been back for a follow up. It wasn’t until I read all of the comments on this site that I realized how serious it is and that my low vitamin d level could be the cause of all my pain and discomfort. I wll be in the doctors office as soon as I can get an appointment.

  12. Laura says:

    Update on my Vit D deficiency. Finished taking 8 pills of 50,000 IU’s each on April 20. Had my levels retested on MAY 2, went up to 67 or 68, started at 22.2. I am still fatigued, so vit D was not the reason for my fatigue. I was trying to eat more potassium rich foods, in two months, only went from 3.3 to 3.4.

  13. Jan says:

    I just had my vitamin D and TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) levels checked and the Vitamin D level was 25 (which is low) and my TSH had actually came down from 74.6 to 7.15 (since I began taking Armour Thyroid 90mg). I have been experiencing severe fatigue, joint pain, lightheadedness, and decreased concentration. Im not sure how much Vitamin D to take but according to all of the MD related videos etc…it seems as if the toxic level of vit D is not until 30,000 IU / daily. I see that a lot of you take various strengths, and the higher the dosage, the more benefits. I am going to make an appointment with my endocrinologist to see what the deal is. I’m really tired of feeling this way 🙂

  14. Anna says:

    I found out I got a Vit D deficiency of 12 at the beginning of March. I’ve been told to take 3000iu a day for three months then 1000iu daily for another three after that. I’m very confused alot of the time and disorientated and I find it quite scary. I think I’ve had this for about ten years, I’m 31 now. I was admitted to hospital in 2002 with severe abdominal cramps, I had numerous visits to the GU clinic for pelvic excaminations. I also experienced urinary and incontinence problems for years which was very humiliating and restricted my beahviour and confidence. The distressing thing is that for years I’ve been treated for post traumatic stress, the sypmtoms cross over in alot of respects and I’m very upset about the all this time thinking it was entirely in my head. I am glad that there is now something I can do but when I got upset I can’t stop myself and it feels like it’s taking up even more of my time. I was put on beta blockers in 2010 for heart palpatations, anxiety and halluncinations and I couldn’t get out of bed for days at a time. I had to go part time last year beacuse I couldn’t cope but couldn’t explain why. I’ve cried so much in the last few weeks, this has taken up my twenties and caused so many difficulties with friends, family, work, study and partners. But most of all I blamed myself for not being able to back up my personality, ambition and verve with the effort they required. I’m in shock. My docotr says it will take a year….I hope its quick!!! I’m trying to take it slowly but it’s hard when you have watched your friends develop and you remain static. However, my frineds say I’m ‘lighter’ somehow because I’m no longer blaming myself. I’m so glad my current doctor did the test.

  15. Linda says:

    I have hypothroid. I have been fatigued for years. It got to the point where I just couldn’t take it anymore. I was tired of being tired all of the time. Saw my doctor and she did blood tests. Lab work came back everything was good except I had low levels of Vitamin D reading at 11. She started me on 50,000 units of vit. d twice a week for 8 weeks. Iam only one and a half weeks into it and I got 2 hours of sun the first three days, as I didn’t know how much I needed or that I shouldn’t wear sunscreen. I’m glad I found this sight. It gave me a lot of good information. I still struggle with fatigue daily. Today I got 20 min of sun and didn’t wear sunscreen. I will keep doing that every day. It sounds like I have a long road ahead of me from what I read here getting levels of Vitamin D back up to normal take a long time.

  16. Angela says:

    Peggy, First of all, a number 6 is CRAZY severely deficient. PLEASE seek a professional’s ad ice ASAP! I am trying to function with an 18ng/ mL deficiency. I’m in PAIN, chronic fatigue and screw the weight…I’m not sure how you are functioning. I can’t keep trying to explain these symptoms away…as soon as I say, Vit. D deficiency I am met with a stare and a look that can only convey how stupid and a wus I must be. This is REAL! My pain is real, my fatigue is real and I know the difference between my BONES and my muscles. I’m sick to death of the family, friends and myriad of doctors who refuse to believe me. I’m on my second Vit. D pill of 50,000 IU…I hope it helps soon!

  17. Laura says:

    Went skiing this winter 5 times and was more tired and drained that usual, especially the day after. Went to doctor on February 29, 2012 and found I had a vitamin D deficiency, my level was 22.2. I have been taking 50,000 IU’s once a week starting on March 2, 2012. On March 6, I dipped back into fatigue off and on. Got to be everyday. Called Doc and they did some more blood tests but were negative. But the fatigue frightens me so I would have anxiety. Plus I am 53 and having hot flashes from menopause and my sleep was disturbed. I became deep sleep deprived and anxious. Also one morning was sleeping on couch and suddenly sat up and couldn’t catch my breath at first. That really scared me and went to see Doc again, she said my level of anxiety was probably exhausting me further. So now I am trying to CALM DOWN. Have taken 6 vit D pills so far. I am praying alot. It has been a difficult time, sometimes I feel horrible from the fatigue. Am looking forward to when the fatigue lightens and I get some stamina back. My vitamin D levels get retested on May 1. Also I was a little low on Potassium, so I have to eat a lot of potassium rich foods. Wonder if I am low on anything else…..

  18. Shelley says:

    I have had extreme fatigue, depression and muscle pain for years. Went to my OB/GYN and my vitamin D levels were very low. I just got on 25,000 IUs a day 10 days ago and my life has changed! I have energy, depression is completely gone and I feel like I woke up, no more fatigue. Before you go on anti-depressants or other medications please get your D levels checked. So easy it is just a blood test. So many people have it. We are stuck in offices all day, or wearing sunblock.

  19. Juanita White says:

    I was diagnosed with rls 5 years ago and take requip. I recently had hyrniatedvdisc surgery in my lower back and it failed and needs to be repeated and had a blood test for lupus come back positive which lupus runs in my family. And was put on 50,000 units of vit. D 3 weeks ago now there are nights when I can’t go to sleep. At least 3 times per week.

  20. Michelle says:

    To Kathy OB S: After months of trying to determine why I was having muscle cramps and extreme fatigue I was told my vitamin d level was 12 also. My doctor has me on 50,000 IU’s once a week for four weeks in addition to 1,000 IU’s a day. My cramping has decreased significantly. I would get another opinion as to how much d you need in the short term to build your levels back up.

  21. Kathy OB S says:

    I’ve been having cramps in legs and feet for many years, and tried to find out what caused it. Had circulation tested and it was ok. My Dr. told me to drink soda water with quinine in it, it does help somewhat. Also have muscle spasms. Today I found out my Vitamin D level is a 12 and Doctor told me to take Vitamin D3, 1,000 IUs. Please let me know if you think this is what might have caused the cramps and will they go away? Thank You.

  22. mome2will says:

    I am on 50,000 ic and before taking I was having bad muscle cramps, pelvis pain and suffereing a uti. Just based on what I have been reading on the internet all of this could be related. So I would think yest to your questions. I have been taking the vitamin and the muscle aches are very little but this morning I woke up just tired. I have doctor appt today. I hope you feel better.

  23. Peggy says:

    I just got my blood work back and my Vitamin D level is a 6. I am severely depressed and have been going through medications trying to get help. Could this deficiency be part of my problem? Thank you so much for your help!

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