The skin produces vitamin D upon exposure to the sun, earning it the name “the sunlight vitamin”. Several factors lower the ability of the skin to make vitamin D. They include:
- Use of sunscreen,
- Darker skin color,
- Clothing, and
- Shorter winter days.
Most of us don’t get enough vitamin D during the winter, yet it’s then that we most need it.
Higher latitude residents around the world, where there is less daylight in winter, see the largest seasonal variations in vitamin D levels.
This article will answer the following questions: How much should we therefore take? Do we need to take supplements? Where can we find more? Who are most in need of it?
Why Do You Need More Vitamin D in the Winter?
Spending less time outside during the winter makes you more susceptible to diseases. To prevent this, scientists advise consuming 200 to 2,000 IU daily.
Some argue that 1500 to 2,000 IU daily is an adequate amount. However, the Institutes of Medicine in the United States advises 600 to 800 IU per day for individuals. Some medical professionals don’t advise direct sunlight exposure to increase vitamin D due to the danger of skin cancer. Instead, they recommend vitamins.
Vitamin D aids in the absorption of calcium from food, but too much vitamin D raises blood calcium levels, which can cause kidney damage. Your digestive microorganisms will be healthiest if you consume more vitamin D throughout the winter, making you more immune to inflammation and infections all year.
Proper Diet and Supplements
To obtain a minimum of vitamin D (600 IU) daily in the winter, adults should consume supplemental vitamin D from meals or supplements in addition to rich vitamin D sources. It especially applies to people with a dark complexion or those who stay out of the sun. They should consume additional vitamin D.
There are plenty of foods that are awash with vitamin D. Examples include fatty fish like:
- Sardines, and
A diet containing the ideal quantity of vitamin D in food would include the following:
- Salmon, sardines, trout, pilchards, herring, eel, and kippers are examples of oily fish.
- Cod liver oil, but avoid using it if you’re expectant
- Fortified foods such as spreads, yogurt, and breakfast cereal.
- Meat, offal, egg yolk, and milk (contain small amounts)
- Margarine, baby formula
- Several green leafy veggies and certain mushrooms.
Here Are Some Things to Remember
It’s crucial to pay attention to the variables you can affect, even though you might not have much control over some of these. The secret to increasing your levels of vitamin D in the winter months is a combination of healthy lifestyle practices, such as adding vitamin D supplements to the correct food and eating foods rich in this nutrient.