What is the Difference Between Vitamin D and Vitamin D3?

Think about vitamin D and vitamin D3 as two zodiac signs that are the same element. There are some similarities, but there are also some differences! When you hear vitamin D being discussed, it can sometimes be difficult to differentiate between the two. But don’t worry; help is on the way! 

We’re going to walk you through all the differences (and similarities!) that vitamin D and vitamin D3 have. Be prepared to be wowed, because these important vitamins are responsible for a lot of important bodily functions.

What is Vitamin D?

First, let’s dive into explaining exactly what vitamin D is. You’ve probably heard it referred to as “the sunshine vitamin,” because you can acquire vitamin D from being in the sun. It’s also important to note that your body needs vitamin D to function. That is, if you’re not getting enough of it - or any at all - your body can suffer because of that. 

It’s also important to note that vitamin D typically refers to vitamin D2. Vitamin D2 and vitamin D3 are the two different types of this supplement. 

The vitamin’s leading role is to help your body absorb calcium from your intestines. This calcium is required to help your body so-called mineralize your skeleton. In other words, your teeth and bones will thank you for absorbing vitamin D. 

You might have heard this vitamin referred to as “calciferol” at your doctor’s office, because that is vitamin D’s scientific name. And if you’re wondering how you can acquire some vitamin D, we have answers. It’s naturally occurring in several foods, gets added into others, can be taken as a supplement, and is also produced when ultraviolet, or UV, rays from the sun strike your skin. This triggers vitamin D synthesis. 

While a lot of people think of vitamin D as responsible for keeping your bones and teeth healthy (and that it is), it also has plenty of other roles in your body.

 Some of those include: 

  • Helping your body with the absorption of calcium
  • Supporting your immune system and immune function
  • Helps regulate the amount of phosphate in your body 

Side Effects of Vitamin D Deficiency

Getting enough vitamin D is crucial for several reasons. It plays a significant role in helping you take care of your body, and if you’re deficient, you can experience negative side effects as a consequence, such as:

  • High blood pressure 
  • Bone problems 
  • Higher chance of getting sick
  • Falls (especially in older people) 

It’s clear: vitamin D is an important vitamin! Luckily, we’re here to help you get exactly the amount of vitamin D you need to support your lifestyle. 

Cosmos Vita even offers a non-GMO, vegan gummy that’s equally delicious and beneficial. Yum! Our Beaming gummy is packed with vitamin D3 that has been clinically proven to support immune health. You can keep your muscles and bones strong even if you’re spending your days inside, combatting vitamin D deficiency from the comfort of your home or office.

You might be wondering if you’re especially susceptible to a vitamin D deficiency. There are several groups of people who are prone to being deficient. Of course, just because you fall into one or more of these groups doesn’t automatically mean that you are, but it could be worth consulting your doctor about if you’re noticing that you’re experiencing side effects. 

The groups of people who are at a higher risk for developing a vitamin D deficiency include: 

  • People who don’t spend a lot of time outside or those who live in a northern climate without a lot of sunlight
  • People with darker skin
  • People who follow a vegan or vegetarian diet 
  • People over the age of 55
  • People with certain illnesses (work with your doctor to figure out if you have an underlying condition that could land you in this group)
  • People who are taking certain medications (again, your doctor can help figure out if this includes you)
  • People with certain body mass indexes 

If you’re a member of one or more of these groups, don’t worry! There are ways to get the vitamin D your body needs - and deserves. One of these ways includes supplements. It’s so easy to pop a gummy vitamin - not to mention it supports your body’s wellbeing!

You might also be wondering how to tell if you’re vitamin D deficient. If you want a cut-and-dry answer, go to your doctor and see if you can get bloodwork done. This is arguably the easiest way to figure out exactly how much vitamin D is in your body. 

That being said, there are telltale signs that your body is experiencing a deficiency. Some of these warning signs include: 

  • Fatigue or exhaustion
  • Bone pain 
  • Muscle weakness including aches and cramps 
  • Mood changes, i.e. depression

It’s obvious: vitamin D is an important vitamin, and not getting enough of it could truly be detrimental to your wellbeing. That being said, if you find yourself experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s a good idea to just check in with your doctor and make sure something else is not causing the issue. You know what they say, after all: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure! 

What is Vitamin D3?

Now that you’re an expert in all things vitamin D, let’s dive into vitamin D3 specifically. Their names are super similar, so we totally get it if you’re a bit confused. 

First, let’s talk about all things vitamin D3. It’s a fat-soluble vitamin, and it’s typically sourced from animal products. In addition, vitamin D3 is largely considered to be more potent than its D2 counterpart

Vitamin D also can be more helpful for certain ailments. If you’re taking vitamin D to support a certain function, consult your doctor to get their opinion on which you should aim for. 

What Are the Differences Between Vitamin D and Vitamin D3?

Now that we’ve talked about all things vitamin D and vitamin D3, let’s dig into the differences between these two supplements. You’ll find that, while there are some, there are also some major similarities. 

The first difference between vitamin D and vitamin D3 is the source of these vitamins. While vitamin D typically is sourced from plant sources, vitamin D3 usually comes from animal sources mainly including fish oil fatty fish, egg yolk, and liver. In addition, when your skin is exposed to the sun, it creates vitamin D3.

It’s also important to note that if you’re eating fortified foods to boost your intake, you’re probably intaking vitamin D -- not D3. This is another significant difference. In addition, for some vitamin D formulations, you might need a prescription from your doctor. By contrast, vitamin D3 formulations are always over-the-counter and available to anyone who wants to take them. 

In addition, depending on what conditions you want to support through taking vitamin D, there might be an advantage to taking one over the other. Talk to your doctor to get their opinion if you’re taking vitamin D with the intention of supporting a specific medical condition. 

There are some similarities between the two vitamins, however. For one, both of these supplements get processed in your body through the liver. And while the sources are different, they are overwhelmingly similar in both their function and how they can help your body. 

In Summary

Vitamin D is an extremely important vitamin, and it makes sense if you’re looking for ways to add it into your wellness routine. That being said, there are multiple iterations of these important supplements, so it can be confusing to figure out which is the right fit for you. 

Vitamin D is widely considered an important vitamin because of how it can support your teeth and bone health. While you can acquire some vitamin D from the sun, or even foods, it can be difficult to get the required amount without taking a supplement. That’s where Cosmos Vita comes in. 

Vitamin D and vitamin D3 are undoubtedly similar. That being said, they’re not exactly the same, and a lot of that comes down to the source where the vitamin and how the particular vitamin is acquired. 

As always, if you have any questions regarding your vitamin intake, set up a quick chat with your doctor! Since they know you and your medical history, they’ll be able to give you some great insight as to what type of vitamin D is right for you. And guess what? 

Once you figure that out, we have what you’re looking for, right here at Cosmos Vita!










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