Vitamin D is also known as the Sunshine Vitamin. Many people think that simply spending 10 minutes outdoors allows your skin time to synthesize enough vitamin D to be healthy. But that may not be true for you depending on skin type and your location. Before we get to that, let's learn more about this amazing vitamin!
First, what does vitamin D do? Well, more than you might think! Vitamin D is responsible for a variety of functions. Here are a few:
* Regulates the absorption of calcium and phosphorus
* Facilitates normal immune system functions
* Aids with the development of bones and teeth
* Helps fight against certain diseases such as multiple sclerosis and the flu
* Decreases your chance of heart disease
* Reduces depression and anxiety
* Boosts weight loss through its appetite suppressing effects
If you are deficient in vitamin D, you may experience general tiredness, aches, pains, severe bone or muscle pain, weakness climbing stairs, stress fractures and increased instances of illness. Your doctor can do a simple blood test to determine if you are deficient in this crucial vitamin.
Who needs to supplement Vitamin D? The general rule of thumb is that in the spring and summer, most people can get their needed amount of vitamin D by being outdoors in the midday sun for 10-15 minutes without sunscreen. Darker skin tones may need more time and lighter skin tones slightly less time. However, if you are above the 35th north parallel or below the 35th south parallel, you will need to supplement during the fall and winter (October-March). Most people don't supplement and what happens during this time? TONS of illness! Everything from colds to viruses to the flu - think it's a coincidence? Try again! Vitamin D is crucial and your body knows it.
Wondering what supplements to take? Talk to your naturopath about the levels of vitamin D that you might need depending on your location and melanin levels. Diet and sunshine are great natural ways to get your D3 intake, but most people rarely get to the correct levels with just these methods. We love vitamin D drops - they are easier to take, more quickly absorbed and you don't have to swallow a pill. Make sure you are taking D3 as it's more effective because it's the type that is already stored in your body. Simply drop a few drops in your tea, or on your morning meal and you're good to go!
Now that it's spring, your body can begin to synthesize the vitamin D it needs (unless it's gloomy out...then keep supplementing!). But make sure you have those vitamin D drops ready for those gloomy spring weeks and the fall!
The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this Website.