There is an estimated 42 percent of American’s living with varying degrees of Vitamin D deficiency. This nutrient is paramount to our bodies to build strong bones, as well as overall health and wellness. Learn more about Vitamin D, why you need it, and how to get it.
What is Vitamin D
Vitamin D is actually a hormone produced through the kidneys, and is essential to human life. We need it for pretty much every part of our bodies, including our minds. Soaking up the sun allows Vitamin D to absorb directly through our skin, while Vitamin D supplements have to be broken down once it hits our system.
Vitamin D is unusual when you compare it to the other vitamins we need. Most others, we are unable to make ourselves, and we get them strictly through our foods and supplements. Whereas, with Vitamin D, our bodies take it directly from the sun and processes it. Exposure to the sun for as little as 5 minutes, 2-3 times per week, can give us enough Vitamin D. The trouble is, our bodies break it down quickly, so it needs to be replenished. That can be difficult, especially for those living in areas where winter can last forever.
What Does Vitamin D Do?
Research is always being conducted on Vitamin D, and no one knows precisely all the benefits it provides. We already know the role Vitamin D plays in bone health due to the way it helps the body to absorb calcium. Beyond that, it’s crucial to so many other parts and functions of the human body.*
Vitamin D is scientifically proven to*:
- Lowers the risk of Type 1 Diabetes
- It may help to lower blood pressure
- Lowers the risk of heart attacks
- Supports the health of your brain, and nervous system
- Supports the health of your immune system
- Can reduce the risk of the flu
- Aids in healthy pregnancy
- It lowers the risk of osteoporosis
And those are just the tip of the iceberg. Vitamin D is definitely something you want to make sure you’re getting plenty of.
Low Vitamin D and Weight Gain
As we already know, nearly half the population of the United States is deficient in Vitamin D. And more than half of the population are overweight. Coincidentally, being deficient in Vitamin D can cause weight gain. Interesting, right?
By not getting enough Vitamin D through direct sunlight or diet, we are more at risk for health problems, and being overweight is a significant one of those problems. That leads to diabetes, heart disease, bone and joint problems, and so much more. So, what’s the solution? There are studies directly linking Vitamin D with weight. And to offset that, it would make sense to incorporate the correct amount of the vitamin into your daily routine. Keep in mind, taking Vitamin D won’t necessarily take off the extra weight, but it could prevent the numbers on the scale from going up. Of course, your caloric intake will also come into play.
What Foods are High in Vitamin D
Your best source for Vitamin D will be the sun. But, there are other ways to get it, which is especially helpful to people who live in areas where the sun isn’t always willing to comply.
The best foods to get enough Vitamin D are:
- Canned Salmon
- Canned Tuna
- Cod liver oil
- Fish like salmon, swordfish, trout, and mackerel
- Mushrooms like portobello and morel
- Whole milk (even chocolate)
- Soy milk
- Rice drinks
- Fortified orange juice
- Fortified cereals
- Eggs, particularly hard boiled
Signs of Vitamin D Deficiency
There are quite a few segments of people who are at risk for Vitamin D deficiency. Here are some of the types of people who have the potential to be Vitamin D deficient:
- Older adults
- Infants who are breastfed
- People with darker skin
- People who mostly stay indoors
- People who always use sunscreen
- People who don’t eat very much fish or seafood
- Severely overweight people
Signs you may be deficient in Vitamin D:
- Getting sick often with colds or flus
- Having recurring respiratory infections such as bronchitis
- Extreme exhaustion, which could be attributed to many things, including a Vitamin D deficiency
- Constant back and bone pain
- Muscle aches not attributed to exercise
- Wounds slow to heal
- Bone and hair loss
The problem with being Vitamin D deficient is that most people don’t realize they are until they’ve been diagnosed by their doctor. Many of the deficiency signs are sort of innocuous and could be caused by many different factors. Thankfully, a Vitamin D deficiency is easily reversed simply by adding it to your diet through food, sun, or supplements. Your doctor will recommend the proper dosing based on your age, and weight.
If you’re experiencing issues with your hair, nails, and skin, you may want to start taking a vitamin specially formulated for those three things. Try the Hair, Skin, and Nails Pod!
The dosing the FDA recommends:
- 10mcg dose for up to 12 months of age
- 15mcg dose of Vitamin D for ages 1-70 years old
- 20 mcgs for people who are over 70, or pregnant/breastfeeding
Do not take over 100 mcgs of Vitamin D without consulting with your doctor. Vitamin D overdosing is rare, and it only occurs if an extremely high dose is taken over a long period of time. Watch out for symptoms such as confusion, vomiting, lethargy, stomach pain, and low blood pressure.
To make sure you’re getting the proper amount of Vitamin D, and other essential vitamins and nutrients, personalize your vitamins here: Personalized Pods
*Disclaimer: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) suggests that you consult with a health care professional before using any dietary supplement. Many supplements contain ingredients that have strong biological effects, and such products may not be safe in all people.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.