How to Get Your Daily Dose of Vitamin D During Winter
Experts agree that vitamin D, also considered the sunshine vitamin, has a variety of important health benefits. Getting some time in the sun is ordinarily the best way to get your daily dose of Vitamin D. However, depending on where you live and what the season is, that might be a challenge. It may even be impossible! So, here is a handy guide to how you can still get vitamin D during winter.
Vitamin D During Winter: Health Benefits
First, why is vitamin D so important? It has been shown that getting enough sunshine, approximately 15 minutes per day in fact, generally improves your health. Most importantly, vitamin D helps regulate your body’s absorption of calcium and phosphorous, which is vital for bone growth and strength. Therefore, having enough vitamin D can help prevent bone diseases such as osteoporosis.
Vitamin D also facilitates normal immune system functions. In addition, studies show that vitamin D helps prevent heart disease, strokes, cancer, high blood pressure, Alzheimer’s Disease, multiple sclerosis, and diabetes. Finally, vitamin D helps keep your body feeling healthy! It helps with depression, weight loss, and even the common flu.
Vitamin D During Winter: Tips and Tricks
Getting natural vitamin D from the sun is certainly the best approach. However, unfortunately, that is not always possible during the winter months. Whether the sky is overcast, or the sun is hidden by the horizon, sometimes getting your 15 minutes of sunshine per day might be out of the question. Don’t worry! There are still ways for you to avoid vitamin D deficiency, or D-ficiency.
For example, vitamin D occurs naturally in sardines, eggs, and shrimp. Furthermore, fatty fish such as wild salmon, tuna, and mackerel are a great source of vitamin D during the winter months. Only 2.5 servings of salmon per week will help you achieve a balanced amount of vitamin D.
Additionally, you can add food or drink items that have been vitamin D fortified to your diet such as:
- -Orange juice
Vitamin D supplements are an option as well. However, natural is always a better option. Be sure to consult with your primary care physician about the best plan for you.
Vitamin D During Winter: What’s the Plan?
In conclusion, while there are a wide variety of diets, locations, and circumstances, here are some tips and tricks that hopefully everyone can follow.
- 1. Try to get 15 minutes of midday sunlight each day from late spring through to early fall
- 2. Once sunlight is not an option, consider eating two servings of fatty fish (such as wild salmon) per week throughout the fall and winter months
- 3. Finally, for vegetarians or those with fish allergies, you can gain the necessary and important nutrients by drinking three cups per day of vitamin D fortified milk of any kind – cow, almond, soy, or any other milk substitute
From all of us here, we hope you stay happy and healthy throughout the winter months!