Summer is on the horizon and we couldn’t be more excited for it. There’s nothing better than getting outside, breathing fresh air and taking in the sunshine. And speaking of sunshine, did you know that the sun’s UVB rays can trigger cholesterol in our skin to produce vitamin D? It’s true! Here’s why that’s important…
By binding with receptors in the intestines, vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium which is necessary for healthy bones. Without enough vitamin D, the body can fall victim to bone diseases such as rickets and osteoporosis. Just 5 to 10 minutes of sunshine a few times a week can help your body get the vitamin D it needs.
If you don’t have time to soak up the sun, or if you’re like me and you slather a thick layer of sunscreen from head to toe every time you leave the house, have no fear – there are many other ways to get the vitamin D your body needs without relying on the sun’s rays!
If you’re a fan of seafood, you’re in luck. Many different kinds of fish, including salmon, tuna and mackerel are great sources of vitamin D. Not only are they tasty, but they’re also rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Look for sustainable wild-caught options as these fish tend to have more vitamin D than fish that are farmed.
Don’t like fish? Don’t worry! While foods like eggs, pork and mushrooms are naturally high in vitamin D, fortified foods, such as milk (both cow’s milk and plant-based milk alternatives), cheese, orange juice, breakfast cereal, yogurt and tofu have generous amounts of vitamin D added to them.
According to Medical News Today, the recommended daily amount of vitamin D for ages 1 to 70 is 600 IU. If you have trouble meeting your recommended daily allowance of vitamin D through food or sunshine, vitamin D supplements may be a good option for you.
A wide variety of supplements can be found at grocery stores, pharmacies and online. When shopping for vitamin D supplements, make sure they are free from any unnecessary ingredients like added sugars, artificial colors or allergens, and check to make sure they supply at least 600 IU.
It’s estimated that somewhere around 40% of all Americans are deficient in vitamin D. So, whether you take a walk outside, eat a delicious piece of salmon or pop a supplement or two, take a moment to make sure that you’re getting enough vitamin D each and every day.
To learn more about the benefits of vitamin D and how you can increase your daily intake click here.