Exploring Good Sources of Vitamin D

You have a lot of alternatives at your disposal to make sure you’re getting enough vitamin D. Although calcium is frequently highlighted as being essential for strong, healthy bones, vitamin D is also very important for bone health. According to Cleveland Clinic family care specialist Donald Ford, MD, without it, the calcium you get from foods like yogurt, cheese, and even veggies like broccoli wouldn’t penetrate into your bones efficiently.

In addition to helping to prevent osteoporosis, which weakens bones, vitamin D also contributes to the maintenance of bone strength over time. Tania Elliott, MD, an instructor of clinical medicine at NYU Langone, states that the Institute of Medicine advises a daily intake of 600–1000 IU of Vitamin D to cover the needs of 95% of the population.

Fortunately, obtaining the suggested daily amount can be accomplished in a number of ways.

Let’s investigate a few of these choices:


Sunlight Sunlight increases the body’s production of vitamin D, but there is a danger of skin cancer, so it’s crucial to weigh the benefits against this. You can benefit from 20 to 25 minutes of sun exposure during the day, but it’s important to protect your skin from dangerous rays. Remember that the sun may not be able to supply your daily needs if you live in a higher latitude, during the winter, are older, or have darker skin. It’s important to remember that vitamin D production requires more light than what comes through windows.
Freshly Prepared Fatty Fish Fish of all kinds, particularly those with higher fat content, are great providers of vitamin D. Three ounces of cooked rainbow trout gives 645 IUs of vitamin D, whereas cooked salmon offers 570 IUs. Additional foods high in vitamin D include tuna fish, sardines, and cod liver oil. According to a study that was published in Environment International in February 2021, herring and Atlantic mackerel are excellent suppliers of this vital vitamin. Eating fatty fish gives you the heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids and increases your vitamin D consumption.
Fish Cans An other means of getting more vitamin D is through canned salmon. Sardines and tuna in oil-cans are especially good sources. Four ounces of canned light tuna has about 150 IUs; four ounces of canned albacore tuna has about 50 IUs; and two cans of sardines have slightly more than 40 IUs per ounce. Furthermore, canned fish has a longer shelf life and is frequently less expensive than fresh fish, making it a practical choice to have on hand.
Specific Mushrooms Like humans, mushrooms have a remarkable capacity to generate vitamin D. According to Dr. Elliott, treating mushrooms with UV light fortifies them with vitamin D. Portobello mushrooms and other vitamin D-rich mushrooms are worth trying, especially for vegetarians looking for plant-based vitamin D sources.
Improved Milk Almost all varieties of cow’s milk in the US are vitamin D fortified. A 6-ounce portion of yogurt has about 80 IUs of the vitamin, whereas an 8-ounce glass of milk normally has at least 100 IUs. Certain rice and soy milks are fortified as well, but it’s important to look at the label to see how much vitamin D is included.
Various Orange Juice Types For those who would rather not consume dairy products, vitamin D can be obtained from fortified orange juice. A normal 8-ounce glass of fortified juice contains approximately 100 IUs of vitamin D, though the exact amount varies among brands. Don’t forget to read the label to make sure the brand you select has vitamin D added to it.
Yolks in eggs Eggs are a flexible product that can be used in many different dishes, making them an easy way to get vitamin D. It’s crucial to remember that the yolk of an egg contains the majority of the vitamin D in it, thus eating the entire egg is required to reap the benefits of its vitamin D content. There are about 40 IU of vitamin D in one yolk. However, because eggs contain cholesterol, it is not advisable to rely only on them for your regular vitamin D consumption.
Enhanced Cereal Choosing vitamin D-fortified low-calorie cereal is one way to include vitamin D in your daily routine. One cup of fortified cereal (around 29 grams) plus half a cup of fortified milk can yield about 140 international units of vitamin D. An 8-ounce glass of orange juice that has been fortified could raise your intake to more than 200 IUs overall.
Liver of Beef While it may not be the most enticing choice, a 3.5-ounce portion of cooked cow liver provides about 50 IUs of vitamin D in addition to other vital elements like protein, iron, and vitamin A. But because it contains a lot of cholesterol, it’s best to take cow liver in moderation or look into other options like oily fish.
Oil from Cod Liver Even though cod liver oil has a reputation for being an acquired taste, it’s frequently offered in capsule form or flavored with citrus or mint. One tablespoon has around 1,300 IUs of vitamin D, which is more than the daily recommended requirement of 600 IUs. This amount is more than the daily limit consumption for newborns (1,000 IUs) but not the maximum for adults over the age of eight (4,000 IUs). Be cautious and see a doctor before thinking about taking cod liver oil supplements.
Ultraviolet Light Bulbs and Lamps Those with a higher risk of vitamin D insufficiency might use UV bulbs and lamps. These are smaller machines that resemble tanning beds. However, using them comes with the same hazards for skin cancer and calls for safety goggles. Before utilizing UV lamps or bulbs, it is imperative to speak with a healthcare professional because their use should be supervised and advised.
Although some people use supplements to get more vitamin D, there is still debate in medicine on whether or not supplements are necessary. Unless there are particular concerns, routine testing and screening for vitamin D insufficiency is generally not advised. It’s important to remember that correct assessment is difficult because valid reference ranges and trustworthy tests for vitamin D are currently developing.

Lastly, it’s critical to understand that consuming too much vitamin D can eventually have a negative impact on health. It is unlikely that intake levels lower than 250 mcg (10,000 IU) will result in harmful effects. The Food and Nutrition Board does, however, provide a warning that even reduced vitamin D consumption may result in negative outcomes, such as soft tissue calcification, heart arrhythmias, nausea, vomiting, dehydration, and even death. To make sure your bone health is sufficiently supported, look into natural vitamin D sources, restrict your time in the sun, and speak with a healthcare professional before incorporating any additional supplements into your daily regimen.

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