Hello, my name is Deon. You probably know me by my Earth name: Vitamin D.
With winter upon us, I thought it was necessary to provide you with some critical information.
First, I ask that you keep this message confidential. The Academy of Nutrients, Vitamins And Minerals (ANVAM) has made me swear not to reveal my true identity—that I’m one of many sentient nano beings employed to work inside your human body to ensure it functions properly.
I work along side my friends, Cali and Phred (you know them as Calcium and Phosphorus) to keep your bones and teeth healthy. I also do some work on the side to keep your immune system and genes healthy, but for the sake of this discussion, my primary job is in the Bones and Teeth Division.
I don’t live inside your body, I just work there. I travel via pills, food, or on a beam of sunlight. I prefer light travel—it’s fast, efficient, and I enter through your skin in a greater capacity. Food is a much slower vehicle, and humans rarely ingest me because I’m only found in disgusting foods like sardines and cod liver oil. However, for the past ninety years, your food scientists have been fortifying me in milk and cereal, so many humans consume me during their breakfast.
When I travel to your body I’m always in hypersleep, which means I’m dormant upon arrival. I must be transported to the liver or kidneys to be activated. There my work shift begins!
My job classification is a Regulator. Along with my supervisor, Paul Thomas Harold (aka Parathyroid Hormone), we make sure Cali and Phred are in the right place and in correct balance so your bones and teeth work at optimal efficiency. I’m the only member of ANVAM that possesses the magic keys that will unlock the doors to bones and small intestines, which is where Cali and Phred are absorbed and begin their work shift. I especially need to keep an eye on Cali. She’ll sometimes get lost or try to leave work before her shift is over, so I make sure she doesn’t hop aboard a pool of your urine and exit the body. Losing too much of her could lead to weak bones.
Sometimes, if you don’t eat the right foods or see enough sunlight, I’m unable to report to work. This is especially common during the winter months in Earth’s northern regions (and the reason I’m sending this message). When this happens, Cali and Phred are on their own, gathering outside your bones and small intestines waiting for my magic keys. But since I’m not there, they can’t do their job. Potentially, this could lead to an outbreak of osteomalacia or rickets—and your bone foundation might deteriorate like a house digested by termites. Not fun.
So this winter, make sure you eat vitamin D-fortified foods or take supplements. I put in a lot of hours taking care of you; I’d hate to see your bones slowly crumble to a pile of dust.
Happy new year!
Deon Dihydroxy III
Regulatory Communications Officer
Bones and Teeth Division
Academy of Nutrients, Vitamins, and Minerals