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Vitamin D: Health Benefits, Facts, and Research

Vitamin D is pretty familiar to just about everyone. Having proper levels of vitamin D in your body can help stay healthy and avoid a deficiency. With vitamin D difficult to come by through food only, understanding the research behind the facts that outline the health benefits of this fat-soluble vitamin can help you identify what and where to get this important nutrient. Research has shown the benefits of vitamin D and we here at HPFY can give you the important information you may be searching for.

Vitamin D

What foods have Most Vitamin D?

The benefits of supplements are undeniable and it’s the same with vitamin D. The effects of vitamin D on the body are wide and can include improving absorption of magnesium, calcium, and phosphate. In this group of vitamins, the compounds Vitamin D2 and Vitamin D3 are the most valuable to us humans. Foods that are naturally high in vitamin D include:

  1. Fish (especially salmon)
  2. Mushrooms such as Portobello, Maitake, and Crimini
  3. Fortified milk
  4. Fortified Tofu
  5. Fortified Yogurt
  6. Fortified Orange juice
  7. Eggs including yolks
  8. Pork chops
fish Egg

These are just some examples of easy (and tasty) ways to incorporate foods and drinks that can give us the benefits of vitamin D. It’s due to the presence of vitamin D, our bodies can absorb calcium. Yes, our diets can be an excellent source of vitamin D, but don’t sell exposure to the sun or vitamin D supplements short when getting your recommended daily allowance of vitamin D. So, now that we know where to get vitamin D, how does it benefit our bodies? Some benefits include:

  • Promoting healthy bones/teeth
  • Supporting immune, brain, and nervous system health
  • Maintaining healthy insulin levels and diabetes control
  • Lung function
  • Heart health

The National Institute of Health (Office of Dietary Supplements) can give a great outline of the research and results related to vitamin D. A link to this information is below.

https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminD-HealthProfessional/

Enfamil D-Vi-Sol Vitamin D Supplement Drops for Infants Deva Vegan Vitamin D 800 IU Dietary Supplements Bio Nutrition Vitamin D-3 12000 IU Vitamin Supplement

How to Avoid Vitamin D Deficiency?

Yes, the benefits of vitamin D can be wide-ranging and benefit us in many ways, but what happens when we have a deficiency in our vitamin D intake? The causes of a vitamin D deficiency can be numerous. For instance, those with dark skin or use sunscreen can minimize our body’s ability to produce vitamin D by reducing our ability to absorb UV-B rays emitted from the sun. It is the absorption of these rays that allow our skin to produce vitamin D. Also, those who live in northern latitudes or are exposed to higher levels of pollution should consider supplements or a diet with higher levels of vitamin D since they may receive lower amounts of UV-B rays from the sun. The American Academy of Pediatrics also recommends that infants who exclusively breast-feed should get 400 IU of oral vitamin D per day, especially those with darker skin or have minimal sun exposure. A vitamin D deficiency can prevent itself in symptoms such as:

  • Frequent illness/infection
  • Fatigue
  • Slow wound healing
  • Muscle weakness
  • Bone pain
  • Asthma

Vitamin D deficiency can lead to other symptoms, but over time these can lead to complicated problems down the road. Cardiovascular conditions and autoimmune problems can be experienced over time, as well as cancers such as breast, colon, and prostate as research has indicated. The chart below shows vitamin D recommended daily supplemental allowances by age.

Recommended Daily Vitamin D Supplemental Allowances

By crafting a diet that is rich in vitamin D and using daily supplements, as well as getting out in the sunshine, you can be sure to avoid vitamin D deficiency and stay healthy. As always, consult your physician before starting any supplement regimen or changing your diet to be sure these changes are right for you.

 

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