Updated: Apr 6
Vitamin D has been a prominent force of the supplement business for awhile now. You may have read many articles or sales pitches on making sure you get enough.
Six important factors that influence your Vitamin D levels:
(according to Harvard Health)
Where you live. The further away from the Equator you live, the less vitamin D–producing UVB light reaches the earth’s surface during the winter months. We usually are covered up with a lot of clothing and the days are shorter which limits our UVB exposure.
Air quality. You would not think of this first off but the carbon particles in air from burning fossil fuels, wood, and other materials scatter and absorb UVB rays which in turn diminishes vitamin D production.
Use of sunscreen. Using sunscreen will help in preventing you to from getting a sunburn, doing so it blocks UVB light. It is noted “that that very few people put on enough sunscreen to block all UVB light, or they use sunscreen irregularly, so sunscreen’s effects on vitamin D might not be that important.”
Skin color. The darker your skin the more Melanin which contends for UVB in turn dark-skinned people tend to require more UVB exposure than light-skinned people to generate the same amount of vitamin D.
Weight. Again who knew that body fat grabs vitamin D, storing it away for a rainy day. We know how our fat is a storage area.
Age. Oh great another factor you cannot control, we don’t get younger. Older people have lower levels of the substance in skin that has UVB light being converted into the vitamin D precursor.
So when we do manage to get the right amount of Vitamin D, We get improve the health of:
Bones and Teeth
Heart and Circulatory System
Where to get your D?
Bonus! Your body makes vitamin D when sunlight hits the skin.
You can also get vitamin D from your food or by taking a supplement.
Getting your Vitamin D from Foods: Salmon, Tuna, Sardines. Vitamin D is added (fortified food) to Milk, Orange Juice, Margarine and some breakfast cereals.
Taking a supplement: There is still a debate on supplements and you will find much back and forth advice on the amount and the real need and even the real effects of a supplement. When adding a supplement always talk to your doctor first. Taking a Vitamin D supplement may give you peace of mind. The amount of vitamin D recommended by the Institute of Medicine is 600 IU of vitamin D a day for everyone ages 1 to 70800 IU of vitamin D a day for those 71 and older. If you rarely get out in the sun, or just are not too sure you are getting 600 to 800 IU of vitamin D per day, you might want to take a supplement that contains 400 to 1,000 IU this is a safe and inexpensive insurance.
When you get too little Vitamin D you may experience:
When you get the right amount of Vitamin D:
Better calcium absorption
Helps with #hormones
Stronger Immune system
Lowers blood pressure
Get your D and have a happy awesome day!