Vitamin D is an essential fat-soluble vitamin.
We all know Vitamin D promotes calcium absorption in the gut and maintains adequate serum calcium and phosphate concentrations to enable normal bone mineralization and to prevent hypocalcemic tetany (involuntary contraction of muscles, leading to cramps and spasms). But there are many more uses of Vitamin D.
Daily Requirement of Vit D varies as per age. Vitamin D is not gender biased.
0-12 month baby needs 10 mcg [400 IU]. 1 year to 70 years of aged person needs 15 mcg [600 IU]. The daily requirement does not change during pregnancy or lactation. But Post 70 years of age person needs 20 mcg [800 IU].
Sources of Vit D
Aside from the sun, you can also get extra vitamin D through a few (albeit very few) foods. Foods like milk, orange juice, yogurt, and breakfast cereals can also be fortified with vitamin D.
And of course, you can always go the supplement route. Many doctors now consider a daily dose of 1000-2000 IU of D3 safe and will assure optimal levels for most adults. As for when to take it, because vitamin is fat soluble, pairing it with your largest meal of the day is always better, “containing fat to assure maximal absorption.” But again, check in with your doctor before you decide to try vitamin D in supplement form.
1] COD Liver Oil [1 tbs] has 34mcg of Vit D ie. 170% of DV
2] Cow’s Milk [1 glass] has 2.9-3.25 mcg of Vit D ie. Minimum of 15% of DV
3] Eggs [1 large] has 1.1 mcg of Vit D ie. 6% of DV
4] Mushrooms [1/2 cup] has 1.1 mcg of Vit D ie. 1% of DV but when treated with UV rays mashrooms can synthesis Vit D. Then they can have 9.2 mcg of Vit D ie. 46% of DV
5] Fortified Orange Juice has 2.5 mcg of Vit D ie.12% of DV
6] Salmon cooked [3.5 ounce] has 14.2-24.7 mcg depending on variety ie. Minimum of 71% – 124% of DV
7] Sardine [1 can ~3.8 Oz] has 4.42 mcg of Vit D ie. 22% of DV
8] Mackerel [half fillet] has 9 mcg of Vit D ie. 45% of DV
Health Benefits of Vitamin D are as follows;
1] Vitamin D strengthens your bones
Vitamin D is famous for its bone-building and strengthening powers. It is also needed for bone growth and bone remodeling by osteoblasts and osteoclasts.
“Vitamin D promotes absorption of calcium in your gut, which ultimately allows for normal mineralization of your bones,” says Jackie Newgent, RDN, culinary nutritionist and author of The Clean & Simple Diabetes Cookbook.
Basically, the calcium that benefits your bones wouldn’t be able to do its job without vitamin D.
2] Vitamin D can help strengthen muscles
Along with its bone-building abilities, vitamin D is also influential in strengthening muscles. “Lack of vitamin D in the body can increase the risk of having weak muscles, which in turn increases the risk of falls,” Lana Nasrallah, MPH, RD, clinical dietician at UNC Health.
3] Vitamin D Improves immune system
Dr. Nasrallah adds that vitamin D can also help build immunity. “It can support the immune system by fighting off harmful bacteria and viruses,” she says.
In fact, this role in possibly preventing infections has become a critical concern during COVID-19 pandemic, as researchers are interested in its potential role in infection outcomes.
4] Vitamin D can help strengthen oral health
Because vitamin D helps our body absorb calcium, it plays a crucial role in supporting oral health, lowering the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
5] Vitamin D can help you lose weight
Dr. Boyd points out that obesity is a known risk factor for low vitamin D levels—which means more vitamin D may help with weight loss. One 2009 study in the British Journal of Nutrition found that, in overweight or obese women with low calcium levels, those who took a daily dose of calcium paired with vitamin D were more successful shedding pounds than those who took a placebo supplement, due to an “appetite-suppressing effect” of the combination.
6] Vitamin D can help battle depression
The sun can brighten up your mood, and so can vitamin D. According to a 2017 review article in the journal Neuropsychology, researchers found “a significant relationship between depression and vitamin D deficiency.” While they acknowledged that more research is needed to define the exact workings of it.
7] Vitamin D has other roles in the body, including reduction of inflammation, battle cancers as well as modulation of such processes as cell growth, neuromuscular and immune function, and glucose metabolism.