What is Vitamin D and what are its benefits?
Vitamin D is also know as the sunshine supplement is commonly produced by the body after sun exposure. Did you know it's actually a pro-hormone and not a vitamin as such? This is because vitamin D can be synthesised by our body when it is exposed to sunlight. Vitamins differ in that they are not created by our body but must be consumed through via foods or supplements.
Vitamin D breaks down very quickly which means that our bodies stores of this essential nutrient can easily run low, especially in winter. Recent studies have suggested that a large growing percentage of the globes population is Vitamin D deficient.
Vitamin D plays a vital role in our well being and is commonly associated with these benefits:
- Maintains healthy bones and teeth
- Maintains our immune system, healthy brain activity and calms our nervous system
- Regulates insulin levels and assist in the management of diabetes
- Maintains healthy lung function and heart health
- Reduces risk of getting the flu
- Reduces the risk of preeclampsia in pregnancy
- Assists to protect against cancer
How much Vitamin D should you take per day (RDA - Recommended Daily Allowances)
The RDS (recommended daily allowance) of Vitamin D are:
- Infants 0-12 months - 400 IU (10mcg)
- Children 1-18 years - 600 IU (15mcg)
- Adults up to 70 years - 600 IU (15mcg)
- Adults over 70 years - 800 IU (20mcg)
- Pregnant or breast feeding women - 600 IU (15mcg)
Symptoms of Vitamin D Deficiency
There are many reasons that can cause vitamin D deficiency such as night shift workers with less exposure to the sun or office workers that spend little time outside, darker skin colour and/or the use of heavy sunscreens that reduce the body's ability to absorb UVB rays.
Some of the more common symptoms of deficiency include:
- Getting sick more often than usual
- Feeling fatigued on a regular basis
- Feeling depressed
- Slow wound healing
- Losing hair
- Muscle pain
If deficiency is not treated it can result in:
- Increased obesity
- Chronic fatigue syndrome
- Alzheimer's disease
- Chronic headaches
What foods contain Vitamin D?
Here are some of the more common foods that contain varying levels of Vitamin D. Cod liver oil, fresh fish including herring, swordfish, salmon, sardines and tuna, eggs and fortified milk.
What to look for and what to avoid when purchasing Vitamin D...
Most supermarket brands of Vitamin D are derived from lanolin. To produce Vitamin D from lanolin the manufacturers have to purify it and then crystallize it and then put it through a heavy chemical process which produces a substance called 7-dehydrocholesterol. This is then liquified in a solvent and exposed to ultraviolet radiation and the end result is a synthesised Vitamin D3. After this the manufacturers purify and crystallise it, add fillers and binders and then produce the Vitamin D3 capsules you see on the supermarket shelves.
Doesn't sound great right? CORRECT!
What you really should be looking for is a pure natural D3 product like my Pure D3 with K2 and Magnesium Glycinate. This product as its name suggests is natural and pure and is sourced from the germ of sprouted buckwheat which is a wholey vegan source. Pure D3 also contains Pure Vitamin K2 and Pure Magnesium Glycinate which ensures maximum absorption by the body.
Vitamin D is essential to our daily wellbeing and studies have shown that 33% to 84% of the Australian and New Zealand population are affected by vitamin D deficiency, so please ensure that you are supplementing sufficiently and avoid the lanolin derived products and only put pure natural vitamins in your body free of chemical processing and full of nasty binders and fillers.
If you have any questions or would like any further advice on Vitamin D intake please don't hesitate to contact me on the Facebook Messenger