As the days get shorter and the weather turns frigid, we all tend to stay indoors sipping piping hot cups of cocoa and the like. We almost get excited about having to go to work, for a bulk of our jobs require us to be indoors in a heated building. Unfortunately, during these cold months, we tend to become deficient in a very important and what some have deemed a miracle pill! Vitamin D.
This fat-soluble vitamin is synthesized and absorbed through our skin as we bask in the sun. It is extremely hard to obtain from food sources, which is why when people are proven deficient, they’re prescribed supplementation.
Have you always wondered why we get sick more often during the winter months? It’s because we are all most likely vitamin D deficient! That’s right, vitamin D plays an integral role in immunity. Discoveries published in both the Vopr Kurortol Fizioter Lech Fiz Kult Journal and Journal of Tropical Pediartics have found that, “children with the lowest vitamin D serum levels are 11 times more likely to develop respiratory infection. When 60,000 IU per week of vitamin D was administered (for six weeks) to children with frequent respiratory infections, the result was a complete disappearance of such infections in the following six months.”
Vitamin D doesn’t just fight off respiratory infections, this vitamin also happens to combat cancers of the prostate, colon and breasts, to name a few. Evidence has also shown that D may play a large role in the “prevention and treatment of type I and type II diabetes, hypertension, glucose intolerance, multiple sclerosis, some autoimmune diseases, schizophrenia and other medical conditions. Two small studies have [also] suggested that vitamin D3 supplements provided benefits in people with active tuberculosis. [And if you can believe it], in 2007, an analysis of 18 different randomized studies found that vitamin D supplementation might even help people live longer.”
Can you see why it’s unfortunate that a majority of us don’t get enough of this vitamin? Unfortunately, at this time, the RDA for vitamin D is way below what many believe to be acceptable, so even if we take supplements, we may still not be getting the recommended allotment. Dr. Michael F. Holick, a pioneer in vitamin D research, believes that, “All teenagers and adults can easily tolerate 10,000 IU of vitamin D a day without concern for toxicity.”
With that said, most of us don’t need to get this much daily, but if we are severely deficient, this amount may be prescribed. Typically though, “teenagers and adults need a total of at least 2,000 IU of vitamin D a day.
Skeptical about taking supplements? While you shouldn’t be, here is a list of the foods that do contain some vitamin D to help you get the 2,000 IU quota!
- Salmon, Mackerel, Tuna, Sardines, Cod Liver Oil
- Fortified Milk and other Dairy Products
- Beef and other Red Meat Liver
- Whole Eggs
Perhaps the title of miracle is not enough to describe the wonderment of vitamin D.