Running low on vitamin D may raise your risk of pelvic floor disorders, such as urinary incontinence (loss of bladder control). That's the key finding of a new study of 1,881 women, 23 percent of whom suffered from pelvic floor disorders.
Defined as the group of muscles that form a sling across the opening of a woman's pelvis, the pelvic floor helps hold the pelvic organs in place. When those muscles are weakened or injured, pelvic floor disorders occur. About one-third of all U.S. women will experience a pelvic floor disorder in their lifetime, according to the National Institutes of Health.
In the new study, researchers found that risk of urinary continence was 45 percent lower among older women with normal vitamin D levels. In order to maintain normal vitamin D levels, many medical experts recommend taking a vitamin D supplement. Although vitamin D can be obtained through some food sources and through sunlight exposure, it can be difficult to maintain sufficient vitamin D levels without using a supplement.