Like any other vitamins and minerals, vitamin D plays a crucial role in ensuring your health and wellbeing. For starters it helps regulate your body’s ability to absorb calcium and phosphorous. It also ensures that your immune system is functioning normally. Vitamin D also helps your body fights various diseases and infections.
Getting sufficient amount of vitamin D is also the secret to having healthy bones and teeth. If your body doesn’t get enough of this vitamin, you are at a greater risk of developing bone abnormalities that include osteomalacia (soft bones) or osteoporosis (fragile bones), as well as certain types of cancer, heart diseases, depression, and weight gain.
So how do you ensure that you get enough vitamin D everyday? Here are the best sources of vitamin D.
Sunlight encourages the body to produce vitamin D. But since prolonged exposure to direct sunlight carries the risk of skin cancer, many experts don’t recommend spending more time under the sun. The trick here is to get a small amount of sun exposure without sunscreen to ensure that you’ll get your daily dose of vitamin D. According to experts, about 20 to 25 minutes of exposure should be enough.
Eating fatty fish can also help you fulfil your daily vitamin D requirement. Salmon, trout, mackerel, tuna, and eel are good sources of vitamin D. What’s more, they contain omega-3 fatty acids that are good for your heart.
Like humans, mushrooms have the ability to produce vitamin D when exposed to UV light so eating certain types of mushrooms is good for those who want to avoid a vitamin D deficiency. For instance, 100 grams of portabello mushrooms contain 446 IU (International Units) of vitamin D, fulfilling 74% of your daily requirement.
If you’re not lactose intolerant or if you don’t have allergy to dairy products, make it a point to drink fortified milk everyday. Milk is rich in vitamin D, with a 237ml glass of milk containing at least 100 IU of the vitamin. Other dairy products that are rich in vitamin D include yogurt, butter, and buttermilk.
In case you’re not a fan of dairy, don’t fret. There’s another option for you: fortified orange juice. Drinking a 237ml glass of fortified orange juice can give you around 100 IUs of vitamin D. Take note, however, that the amount varies from one brand to another. Also, not all brands of orange juice are fortified so be sure check the label.