Take Me Where the Sun is Shining

Now that summer has officially started, we tend to spend more time outdoors, getting natural doses of vitamin D or what is sometimes called “the sunshine vitamin.”
Why is vitamin D often talked about as a beneficial vitamin? It has several important functions including helping in the absorption of calcium and phosphorus and facilitating a healthy immune system.
Many people are lacking in enough vitamin D for optimal function. Your body needs the vitamin to keep strong, to help normal growth and development (especially of bones and teeth) and to help in fighting disease. Feeling tired, have muscle or joint pain, low energy, anxious or get sick often? It could be your level of vitamin D is too low.
Yes, the sun is a main source of vitamin D, however there are many other natural sources including fatty fishes (salmon, sword fish, tuna), fortified cereals and milks, liver, cheese, mushrooms and egg yolks. You can also take a pure vitamin D drop supplement to ensure you are getting enough IUs.
Some tips to ensure you are getting enough Vitamin D:
  • People ages 1 to 70 should get the recommended daily allowance of 600 IU/day. Children younger than age 1 should get 400 IU, and adults older than age 70 should get 800 IU. However, the Vitamin D Council recommends healthy adults get 2,000 IU daily, and more if they get little or no sun exposure.
  • If you take a calcium supplement, you may already be getting added vitamin D. Some calcium supplements contain vitamin D. Speak to your doctor.
  • If you wondering if you are getting enough vitamin D, ask your doctor to test your levels.
  • Do not skip using sunscreen or try other ways to get vitamin D from the sun. Sun exposure without protection raises your risk for skin cancer.
Most of all, enjoy this beautiful weather and ensure you are eating lots of fresh, healthy foods to help you get your vitamins.
Source: American Cancer Society; Vitamin D Council;