Vitamin D is also referred to as the “sunshine vitamin” because sunlight is the best natural source for vitamin D. You can get all the daily requirement of vitamin D just by being exposed to the sunlight for ten to fifteen minutes each day in the early morning hours but if you live in a colder climate it may not be possible to get that amount of sunlight so you need to get if from other vitamin d sources. It is recommended that children and adults get at least six hundred IU each day.
The reason that you need to make sure that you get your recommended daily requirement of vitamin D is that it plays a big role in the development of your bones and keeping them healthy by helping to regulate the use of calcium through your body. Vitamin D produces hormones that make sure that the calcium in your body is properly utilized in your bones.
There are also other reasons that vitamin D is important for your body which include:
• Anti-inflammatory properties—if you are prone to inflammatory diseases like fibromyalgia, arthritis, cardiac infection, etc you may be given by your physician vitamin D supplements because of its powerful anti-inflammatory properties. It helps to make you immune to these types of diseases.
• Helps to prevent microbial diseases—one type of microbial disease is the flu, which many people get because they do not get enough sun during the winter and they are not getting enough vitamin D through diet and nutrition so make sure that you get outside at least five minutes each day during the winter and increase the amount of vitamin D you are getting nutritionally.
• It can help lower your high blood pressure.
• It can help people who have diabetes to bring down their high blood glucose levels.
• Gives you protection against a low amount of nuclear radiation.
• Makes you more immune to diseases by activating your T cells inside your body.
If you are not getting the recommended daily requirements you could develop vitamin D deficiency, which can lead to the early onset of osteoporosis and brittle bones. In children it can cause rickets. It can also lead to depression, especially during the winter when many people seem to be suffering from seasonal affective disorder (SAD) which is thought to be caused by not being exposed to the sun enough. Vitamin D deficiency can also increase the possibility of feeling fatigued more often, possible chronic backache, and obesity.
To treat vitamin D deficiency you need to make sure that you are getting enough vitamin D which can include getting more exposure to the sun by trying to be in the sun at least thirty minutes each day early in the morning, taking vitamin D supplements, and eating the right foods that are rich in vitamin D. You may also be given an injection of vitamin D. Which treatment would be best will be decided by your physician after a physical examination and tests to see how deficient your vitamin D level is.
Even if you are soaking up the sun for at ten to fifteen minutes each day you should still make sure that you are including foods that are rich in vitamin D in your diet and nutrition plan. You can find vitamin D, which is a type of fat-soluble vitamin, naturally in milk, some vegetables, the yolk of an egg, and cod liver and castor oil.
Here’s Top 20 foods highest in vitamin D
When it states “IU” they are talking about “international unit/” To ensure getting the most vitamin D out of a product like cereal, milk, orange juice, etc make sure that the package states that it is fortified.
1. Canned tuna in water—one serving contains fifty percent of your daily dosage,
2. Wild salmon—half of a fillet will give you one thousand four hundred IU.
3. Egg yolks—you will only get the benefit of vitamin D eating the yolk of an egg which will give you approximately twenty IU.
4. Castor oil—one tablespoon will give you one thousand two hundred IU but it should not be taken every day because it has a very high amount of vitamin A. If you take it every day it could cause vitamin A toxicity.
5. Processed meat—how much vitamin D depends on the type of processed meat. Salami has approximately sixteen percent of the recommended daily allowance and beef and pork sausages have between eighty and ninety IU
6. Mushrooms—mushrooms that get direct sunlight during the day will give you the most vitamin D like shiitake mushrooms. Eating them can give you approximately forty-five IU.
7. Beef liver—one hundred grams can give you approximately forty-five IU a day but it is high in cholesterol so you should not eat it every day.
8. Oysters—one serving of a half cup gives you three hundred twenty IU
9. Milk—one cup has between one hundred and one hundred twenty IU so you should drink at least two cups a day. You should make sure that you are drinking whole milk to get the highest allowance of vitamin D.
10. Yogurt—each cup has between forty and eighty IU.
11. Fortified orange juice—one eight ounce glass has approximately ninety IU.
12. Soy products—one cup of soy milk will give you one hundred IU.
13. Cod liver oil—one teaspoon you get one thousand three hundred sixty IU.
14. Fortified cereal—in a half cup you can get up to three hundred forty two IU but make sure that the cereal has no partially hydrogenated oils and little to no refined sugars. Two examples of fortified cereal include corn flakes and oatmeal.
15. Black or red caviar—in one teaspoon you get thirty-seven IU.
16. Fortified soy products—per one half cup fortified tofu can give you one hundred fifty-seven IU and fortified soy milk can give you per half cup forty-nine IU.
17. Sardines—a small tine of sardines will give you approximately seventy percent of your daily requirements of vitamin D.
18. Mackerel—a small three and a half ounce serving will give ninety percent of the recommended daily requirement.
19. Flounder or sole—a serving of three and a half ounces can give you approximately one-fourth of the daily recommended allowance.
20. Pork—one three ounce serving gives you eighty-eight IU.