The Importance Of Vitamin D – Are You Getting Enough?

Apr 24, 2017 | Nutrition

This vital nutrient is one many people don’t really think of, yet populations around the world are suffering from vitamin D deficiency. It’s crucially important to assist in the maintenance of a healthy heart muscle, bone mineralization, skin conditions, mood/cognitive function, immune function, inflammatory response, hormonal health, enhance calcium absorption and more. Today, far too many of us do not get enough vitamin D for optimal health.

Vitamin D Deficiency Symptoms And Causes:

  • Frequent colds and flu’s
  • Respiratory tract infections
  • Fatigue, tiredness
  • Depression
  • Inadequate bone growth
  • Muscle weakness and aches
  • Hormonal imbalances
  • Skin conditions (such as psoriasis)
  • Frequent bone breaks and fractures
  • Lack of sunshine (you’re indoors a lot)
  • You wear sunscreen

Vitamin D is produced in the skin when exposed to sunlight. On average, exposing a large area of your body (stomach/back) in the sun (without sunscreen) for 15 minutes a few times a week (daily is even better) will keep your vitamin D levels in check. If that is not possible exposing your arms, face and even legs in the sun for 5-10 minutes most days will suffice.

We are bought up in a world where we are told to lather on sunscreen when outside, however sunscreen blocks your body from absorbing vitamin D. I am not encouraging you to go out all day and redden or burn your skin, just 15 minutes most days to obtain optimal vitamin D levels. 

If this is just not possible for you (which in the winter months can be very challenging) then a supplement could come in handy. There are some foods which contain vitamin D such as egg yolks, fatty fish like salmon, tuna, sardines, cod liver, some dairy foods. However, if you are deficient in vitamin D food sources will most likely not be enough to bring up your levels.

Vitamin D comes in two forms D2 and D3. D2 is a vegetable-derived form and D3 is an animal-derived form. I would recommend taking a D3 supplement. The RDI is 400iu*, however, the body uses much more of this vitamin each day for general functioning. If you are suffering from a few of the symptoms of vitamin D deficiency listed above it may be worth getting some blood tests through your doctor to check your vitamin D levels. For general health and wellness (if you can’t get sun exposure regularly) I personally recommend getting an intake of 3000-5000iu/day*, as there are many benefits to gain from having adequate levels.

Nat x 

*“IU” stands for International Units, which is an international standard of measurement for vitamins A, D, and E.

Hi I’m Natalie, a Registered Clinical Nutritionist, health influencer, blog writer & recipe creator. My own health complications prompted me to make positive diet & lifestyle changes, revitalize my health leading to a career change from the corporate world to nutritional medicine. I believe in a wholefoods approach to good health, focusing on simple strategies for modern, busy people. 

Let's connect @nataliebradynutrition 

The information on this website is not intended to replace the advice of your GP, a one on one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is not intended for self-diagnosis, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. I encourage you to make your own health care decisions based upon research and in partnership with a qualified healthcare professional. The entire content of this website is based on the opinions of Natalie Brady, a qualified Holistic Nutritionist, unless otherwise noted. Click here for term and conditions of services.

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