Dreary Days and the Importance of Vitamin D


Vitamin D is a much talked about vitamin, and making sure you have enough of it can go a long way to improving your overall health!

It is also know as “The Sunshine Vitamin” as it is produced when ultraviolet (UV) rays from sunlight strike the skin and trigger vitamin D manufacturing.

With the clocks changing and us all getting less sunshine to help with our Vitamin D levels, it is important we keep our levels up!

Vitamin D helps our bone and muscle health, as well as our immune system, which may be particularly important  with the continuing presence of Covid.

It also maintains healthy cell growth, helps regulate blood sugar levels to help against diabetes and reduces inflammation in the body. Vitamin D also plays a role in the prevention and treatment for many other conditions such as cardiovascular disease, hypertension, infections, cognitive impairment, anxiety, depression, and glucose intolerance.

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin naturally present in some foods. These foods include salmon and other oily fish, red meats, egg yolk and fortified food such as cereal.

While obtaining all your nutrition from natural sources is optimal (if difficult for many), Vitamin D is also available as a supplement. There are two forms of vitamin D found in supplements: D2 (ergocalciferol) and D3 (cholecalciferol). D2 is produced by plants, D3 is found in animals and is what we produce using sunlight. Although their chemical structures are different, they are both absorbed in the small intestine and stored in our fat cells.

Vitamin D is involved in helping the absorption of calcium in the body, which aids muscles, including avoiding cramps and spasms, and helps their general functioning and growth. It allows nerves to work properly sending messages between the brain and body. It promotes healthy bone growth, and, with calcium, helps protect you from developing osteoporosis, keeping your bones strong.

So the advice is to supplement your Vitamin D, especially over the dark and dreary Winter months!

Aim to take 10 micrograms (400 international units) per day.  More advice for Vitamin D and children can be found here 

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