Vitamin D is an integral nutrient for our health and well-being, affecting many more areas than just strong bones and teeth. Because of this, it’s essential to ensure adequate levels of vitamin D, especially in the development years of children and infants. Beyond just a strong skeleton, vitamin D has been associated with guarding against various medical conditions. Read more to learn about Vitamin D and its health effects on the body.
Vitamin D is a crucial fat-soluble vitamin necessary in order for the body to maintain healthy bones. It works with the two main elements involved in bone health: calcium and phosphorus, by helping the body absorb them more effectively.
Most organs and cells in the body contain Vitamin D receptors, which, when interacted with, produce 1,25-dihydroxy vitamin D. This relationship has resulted in Vitamin D enhancing many vital biologic pathways leading to strong evidence that a deficiency of the nutrient can increase the risk of several chronic diseases. These diseases can range from autoimmune to neurological disorders, as well as diabetes.
Apart from its preventive benefits, Vitamin D plays an imperative role in cell multiplication and growth while improving neuromuscular activity and immune functions. In fact, it also works to limit inflammation in the body.
While the RDA recommends a daily intake of 600 IU of Vitamin D, recent findings show that most people are deficient and ought to consume between 2,000-5,000IU. This is especially true for people who have indoor jobs and very limited sun exposure, or those living in cold or cloudy climates where they may be frequently covered up when outside. Daily direct sun exposure of 10-20 minutes without sunscreen can generally provide enough Vitamin D to supplement dietary needs
Ensuring adequate dietary Vitamin D intake can exist as a challenge due to the lack of naturally rich sources. Fortunately, fatty fish and fish liver oils provide some of the greatest concentrations of this vitamin, though there is always the chance for an elevated level of mercury from consuming too much fish. To mitigate risk, opt for organically raised fish when possible. Additionally, other foods with smaller levels of Vitamin D include mushrooms, egg yolk, and beef liver. Thus, choosing the right combination of these foods can help ensure your body has enough dietary Vitamin D.
Other sources of Vitamin D
Vitamin D is an essential component of human health, playing a crucial role in bone health and immune function. Without sufficient Vitamin D intake, one may be vulnerable to poor bone integrity and lower immunity. Therefore, it is important to ensure we are providing our body with adequate amounts of Vitamin D. This can be accomplished by consuming food sources or supplementation; the options being numerous. While these become more intuitive for many people, there remains the importance of knowing the implications of a deficiency and taking steps to avoid it. Without vitamin D, our bodies would struggle to keep up with necessary functions for prolonged use.
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