Dubai hospital offers free vitamin D tests – The National (blog)
UAE residents can have free vitamin D tests and consultations at Medeor 24×7 Hospital, Dubai until February 10.
More than 90 per cent of the UAE’s population suffers from vitamin D deficiency and approximately 70 per cent of pregnant women, despite living in a country with year-round sunshine.
“Vitamin D is obtained by the body by exposure to sunlight or through supplements,” says Dr Zeeshan Khan, specialist internal medicine at Medeor 24×7 Hospital, Dubai.
“In the long run, if left untreated vitamin D deficiency can contribute towards the onset of the bone-degenerating disease, osteoporosis. In the short term, the condition can lead to weight gain, fatigue, joint pain especially in the back and knees, low calcium levels, reduced immunity, weak muscles and blood sugar discrepancies.”
In pregnant women, Khan says, vitamin D deficiencies can lead to children with a low birth weight and/or short stature. “It can also increase the risk of gestational diabetes, pre-eclampsia, and low calcium in newborns and in some instances increases the risk of autism.”
He says that most people need eight to 10 minutes’ sun exposure without sunscreen, two or three times a week, but this is dependent on a person’s complexion. “Fairer-skinned people have more melanin in their skin and therefore require less exposure to the sun whereas those with a darker complexion may need to expose themselves for a longer time in the sun,” Khan says.
While sun exposure is the best source, diet can also influence vitamin D production, so eat plenty of fruit, vegetables and fish.
To book a free vitamin D test and consultation at Medeor 24×7 Hospital, call 800 500 600 or visit www.medeor247dubai.com.