- Nutritional Vitamins & Supplements
The Benefits of Vitamin D and How to Avoid Vitamin D Deficiency
A Little Time in the Sun can be Healthy - As Long As You Limit it To a Few Minutes a Day. You Never Want a Sunburn!
Vitamin D Benefits
Vitamin D is one of the most important vitamins for good health and it is also one of the cheapest and easiest of our body's needs to meet. Vitamin D has long been known to be important for your teeth and bones. More recent researchers have also discovered that it might protect you from some types of cancer and some forms of heart disease. It even appears to improve your immune system! In fact, Vitamin D appears to be important for the health of every system in your body.
Nearly every time I pick up a health magazine to read a list of ways we can improve our health, the list includes getting enough Vitamin D, either from sunlight or from taking an over-the-counter supplement. In some cases when people have serious illnesses, strong doses of Vitamin D are even prescribed. It cannot be overstressed that everyone needs to make sure they are getting an adequate amout of Vitamin D on a daily basis. For example, my husband has been diagnosed with Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) and he now takes a prescription form of Vitamin D at the recommendation of his physician.
Lack of Vitamin D in the United States
Studies have found that in some parts of our country 70% of children do not have enough Vitamin D in their bodies. Vitamin D is often referred to as the sunshine vitamin, because our bodies can make it when our skin is exposed to natural sunlight. Since this is so, why is there such a lack of Vitamin D among people, particularly children, in our country?
Many of us spend long hours indoors at work or school during the day. In the winter, especially in the northern parts of the United States, we are often covered by clothing and scarves, leaving very little skin exposed. In addition, the winter sun in northern states is weak and not a good source of Vitamin D production. Consequently, many children may not have any natural exposure to the sun for the entire winter. When this happens year after year, it can be devastating for their health.
Even in the southern states, when people do go outside their skin is often covered by sun screen, which also reduces Vitamin D production. As a result, you probably are not getting enough Vitamin D from the sun alone, even if you live in a sunny climate. What can you do to increase the amount of Vitamin D in your body?
Vitamin D in Gummies for Those You Don't Like to Swallow Pills
This choice is ideal for people who do not like to swallow pills. Be careful with any kind of gummy vitamins, though. You do not want children taking them, thinking they are candy.
How to Get Enough Vitamin D
The first and best way to increase the amount of Vitamin D in your body is completely free. Simply spend about 20 minutes a day outdoors when the sun is at its brightest. Expose your skin during this time without sunscreen, at least on your face and forearms! Your body is able to manufacture its own Vitamin D with just a little help from natural sunshine! If you do this daily, you may be able to get all the Vitamin D you need. Unfortunately, one reason for the current deficiencies in children is because they no longer spend as much time playing outside in the sun as they did 40 years ago! Therefore, if you are a parent, make sure that you send your children outside to play in the sunshine for a little while every afternoon. Better yet, go outside with them and get your Vitamin D, too!
However, as mentioned above, sunshine may not be the solution for everyone. Some people live in Northern climates, where the sun may not be strong enough, especially in the winter. It may also be too cold in the winter to expose your skin for very long. In addition, you may have had skin cancer or take a medication which requires you to use sun screen all the time. What other alternatives do you have?
Foods with Vitamin D
In addition to the sun, It is also possible to get enough Vitamin D from food sources. Fish is one particularly good source, especially salmon, tuna and sardines. Fortified milk and other dairy products, including butter, are also good sources of Vitamin D. So are eggs. Milk and many cereals are supplemented with extra this nutrient. Cod Liver Oil has been used for generations to satisfy the need for this vitamin. You can even purchase cod liver oil in capsule form, if you don’t like the taste.
If you aren't spending enough time in the sun, and you're not sure if you are consuming enough milk, fish, fish oil, butter and eggs, it is often a good idea to supplement your diet. Nearly all multiple vitamins contain Vitamin D, and you can also buy it separately. However you decide to get your Vitamin D, everyone should make sure that they have an adequate amount every day if they want to maintain maximum health!
Order a One Year Supply of Vitamin D for a Low Price
If you live in a Northern State or spend a lot of time indoors, you will probably need to take a Vitamin D supplement. You can purchase it at your local drugstore or order it online.