During the winter months, you may feel achy and sluggish. This could be a symptom of the lack of Vitamin D in your body. If you did not get enough of the nutrient during the warmer summer months, you may need to look for other ways to receive your daily dose of Vitamin D since it wasn’t stored by your body.
The Sunshine Vitamin
Vitamin D, also known as the sunshine vitamin, has a lot of secret benefits that help keep you healthy. The most obvious benefit is strong bones. Vitamin D helps your bones stay strong and healthy. It is closely associated with calcium because it is the nutrient that helps absorb it into the body. When you are not intaking enough of it, your bones become weak and can fracture easily.
Boosts Internal Health
Another function is the protection from cardiovascular diseases. Over the past few years, studies have found that people who are low in vitamin D have a higher risk of high blood pressure and heart problems. The vitamin is able to balance the glycemic intake, decrease blood pressure, and improve the circulation to the vascular arteries.
Go Natural or Take Supplements
The easiest way to get the needed dose of Vitamin D is to step outside and enjoy the sunlight. When outside, your skin absorbs the UVB radiation which then enters the bloodstream to be converted into Vitamin D. Always be careful about how much time you spend in the sun. Too much sun can lead to skin problems, so be sure to apply sun protectant. Another easy way to get the daily requirement is to take Vitamin D supplements. If you live in an area where there is less sunshine in the winter months, supplements should become part of your daily routine. You are also able to get the nutrient through various foods in your diet. Foods high in Vitamin D include:
- Oily fish like trout and salmon
- Mushrooms such as Portobello
- Whole grain cereals
- Any dairy product
- Soy and almond based products
The suggested amount of Vitamin D each day is 600 IU. However, it is highly recommended to take up to 1,000 IU each day, which is about 25 micrograms. If you have a deficiency in the nutrient, your bones will weaken and that can lead to muscle weakness and eventually osteoporosis.