Benefits of vitamin D


     Vitamin D is unlike other vitamins because it is a pro-hormone that is produced in the skin of humans and animals during sun exposure. It’s also known as the “sunshine vitamin”.Vitamins are nutrients that cannot be created by the body and therefore must be taken in through our diet.

     Vitamin D plays a substantial role in the regulation of calcium and maintenance of phosphorus levels in the blood, two factors that are extremely important for maintaining healthy bones. We need vitamin D to absorb calcium in the intestines and to reclaim calcium that would otherwise be excreted through the kidneys.

    Vitamin D is oil soluble which means you need to eat fat to absorb it. Foods high in vitamin D include fish, mushrooms exposed to sunlight, fortified milk, fortified milk substitutes, fortified tofu, fortified yogurt, fortified breakfast cereals, fortified orange juice, pork chops and eggs.

Health benefits of vitamin D

1. Maintain the health of bones and teeth.

2. Prevent heart diseases.

3. Support the health of the immune system, brain and nervous system.

4. Vitamin D Reduces Depression.

5. Support lung function and cardiovascular health.

6. Influence the expression of genes involved in cancer development.

7. Vitamin D fights diseases.

8. Regulate insulin levels and aid diabetes management.

How to we get vitamin D

1. Sunscreen:
While sunscreen is necessary to help prevent skin cancer, it can lead to a lack of absorption. An SPF of 8 can block as much as 95 per cent of vitamin D absorption.

2. Sunrays:
20 minutes of sun exposure a day is enough to meet your vitamin D requirement. Getting your sunshine through a closed glass window also has an effect.

The best food sources for vitamin D are:

1. Fatty fish such as tuna and salmon.

2. Beef liver, cheese, egg yolks and shrimps provide small amounts.

3. Vitamin D is added to breakfast cereals and to some brands of soy beverages, orange juice and yogurt. 

4. Milk is often fortified with vitamin D.

5. Mushrooms are the only plant source of vitamin D.

Deficiency of Vitamin D

1. A deficiency of Vitamin D can lead to rickets, a weakened immune system, increased cancer risk, poor hair growth and osteomalacia.

2. Symptoms of bone pain and muscle weakness can mean you have a vitamin D deficiency.

3. Severe Asthma in Children.

4. Cancer.

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