Why is Vitamin D so important
It is that time of year. The leaves have fallen, we are swapping our visors for beanies and most importantly, that hot summer sun that we all love so much has gone. Less sunlight means less time outside and less time outside means less vitamin D.
Despite the name, Vitamin D is not a vitamin. It is in fact a hormone that encourages the absorption of Calcium and Phosphorus in the body and assists the immune system with its daily functions.
What are the benefits of Vitamin D
Vitamin D is known as the “sunshine” vitamin. It is an essential fat-soluble nutrient. It helps keep bones healthy and strong, helps cell growth, and benefits immune function.
We NEED Vitamin D in our body to help with things like
• Fighting diseases
• Reducing depression
• Boost weight loss
• Support the nervous system
• Reduce the risk of flu
• Regulating insulin levels
• Boost brain function
• Help with bone growth development
Studies show that higher levels of Vitamin D within the body associated with a lower risk of cholesterol cancer. Vitamin D plays a vital role in reducing the formation of new blood vessels and stimulating better interaction between cells. Vitamin D also have been proven to preserve the levels of calcium in the colin, which slows growth of cancer.
Vitamin D has also been proven to boost and regulate your mood and guarding off depression. Researchers believe that because vitamin D is important to healthy brain function, insufficient nutrient levels may play a role in depression and other mental illnesses. An earlier 2005 StudyTrusted Source identified vitamin D receptors in the same areas of the brain associated with depression.
What is VITAMIN D DEFICIENCY?
If you shun the sun, suffer from milk allergies , or adhere to a strict vegan diet, you may be at risk for vitamin D deficiency. Known as the sunshine vitamin, vitamin D is produced by the body in response to skin being exposed to sunlight.
How can Vitamin D deficiency occur?
Your exposure to sunlight is limited
Because the body makes vitamin D when your skin is exposed to sunlight, you may be at risk of deficiency if you are homebound, live in northern latitudes, wear long robes or head coverings for religious reasons, or have an occupation that prevents sun exposure.
You have dark skin
The pigment melanin reduces the skin's ability to make vitamin D in response to sunlight exposure. Some studies show that older adults with darker skin are at high risk of vitamin D deficiency
You do not consume the recommended amount of Vitamin D
This is likely if you follow a strict vegan, because most of the natural sources are animal-based, including fish and fish oils, egg yolks, fortified milk, and beef liver.
Vitamin D is extracted from the blood by fat cells, altering its release into the circulation. People with a body mass index of 30 or greater often have low blood levels of vitamin D.
Vitamin D deficiency can lead to several negative things such as
• Tiredness, aches, pains and overall, not feeling well
• Severe bone/muscle pain
• Stress fractures
• Low moods
• Difficulty climbing stairs/getting up
What food’s contain Vitamin D?
FOODS SOURCES OF VITAMIN D
Vitamin D is made by the body when skin is exposed sunlight and is therefore called the sunshine vitamin. This accounts for approximately 90% of our total vitamin D, with only 10% coming from food.
Food sources high in Vitamin D
• Egg Yolk
• Orange Juice
Vitamin D does not occur naturally in many foods. That is why certain foods have added vitamin D. In fact, newer food nutrition labels show the amount of vitamin D contained in a particular food item.
It may be difficult, especially for vegans or people who are lactose-intolerant, to get enough vitamin D from their diets, which is why some people may choose to take supplements. It is always important to eat a variety of healthy foods from all food groups.
SHOULD I TAKE A VITAMIN D SUPPLEMENT?
You should absolutely be taking a Vitamin D supplement, especially at this time of year. Due to the current climate with COVID19, outdoor activity has been restricted meaning we are not consuming our usual dose of sunlight that we need to produce Vitamin D in the body and any little sun we do get to have is being taken away as we stumble into that dark place, what we call, winter.
Taking a supplement once a day can boost your Immune system, with that nasty virus floating around, it sounds like taking one Vitamin D supplement a day might be your best friend