Vitamin D has many benefits, but one its primary functions is to support bone health. It’s what allows the body to absorb calcium so that bones grow strong.
Without it, people can experience soft or brittle bone tissue that puts them at risk for injury and/or disease.
It’s safe to say vitamin D is something you want in your life–it’s not hard to get, either. Despite that fact, though, many people don’t get the recommended amount of this vitamin. It’s a problem that exists in many countries like India or Mongolia, but it also occurs right here in the United States, especially in groups like teens, pregnant women, and older people.
What can you do to introduce more vitamin D into you and your family’s life?
Consider these 7 sources of Vitamin D…
There is a reason they call vitamin D the sunshine vitamin. It turns out the sun is one of the best sources available. While the sun’s UV rays don’t literally give you vitamin D, they do trigger the production of it in your body.
Synthesis of vitamin D occurs at the skin. Getting vitamin D from sunlight can be tricky business, though:
- too much sun causes damage at the cellular level
- UV rays are effectively blocked by clothingRemember: a little goes a long way when it comes to sunshine.
2. Fatty Fish
Just one filet of salmon can provide more than twice the recommended daily allowance of vitamin D.
Fatty fish, like salmon and tuna, provide other benefits like giving the body with omega-3 fatty acids.
3. Orange Juice
OJ is typically known for it vitamin C content, but manufacturers tend to fortify vitamin D in their orange juice products. Not all orange juice has this added benefit, so when shopping, look for OJ with the fortified label.
One study found that 1000 iu/240mL of fortified orange juice daily increased vitamin D concentrations in adults.
Add cereal to the list of vitamin D fortified foods.
Multi-grain cereals fortified with vitamin D can be a satisfying high-fiber and low-calorie breakfast or snack. (If you like to have milk with your cereal, you’ll get some vitamin D from it too!)
5. Egg Yolks
Egg yolks have a mixed reputation across dietary channels and experts, but they do offer the health benefit of adding vitamin D to your diet.
Keep in mind, though, that there is a reason dietitians recommend eating egg whites only: whole eggs contain more than half of the American Heart Associations recommended daily amount of cholesterol.
One or two a week, though, can shake things up as you look for ways to increase your vitamin D intake.
If you aren’t a fan of the above sources and like mushrooms, we have a trick for you.
Even though mushrooms don’t need sunlight to grow, they react to sunlight in much the same way your skin does — the ultraviolet light triggers the production of vitamin D.
So, before you prepare your mushrooms, stick them under the sun for at least 5 minutes so they can produce some vitamin D for you!
Aren’t a fan of mushrooms either? Vitamin D can be taken as a supplement.
Check with your doctor to see if vitamin D supplementation is something that you will benefit from as it’s essential to other aspects of your health.
There are plenty of ways to get vitamin D (we just mentioned seven)! Food is always the best source but if you are not getting enough, think about taking a vitamin D supplement.