Are you getting enough sunshine, or do you need to supplement?

Vitamin D is a very important nutrient in the body. Often it is just thought of as an essential component for having strong and healthy bones and teeth. But research is consistently demonstrating that Vitamin D is involved in many more functions in the body. It is known to play a key role in regulating inflammation, immune system response, mood balance, diabetes, joint health, and heart disease to name just a few. Cancer sufferers usually have a vitamin D deficiency as do ladies with infertility problems

We should get most of our vitamin D supply through the action of sunlight upon our skin. Here in the UK, during the winter months between October and March the sun does not reach a high enough altitude to provide us with the right kinds of UVB rays for making Vitamin D in our skin.  Instead, our bodies rely upon tissues stores of the nutrients which will have built up during summer.

This is all well and good if we have managed to boost our stores during summer, but for many people this isn’t an option.  Being housebound, working indoors all day, sunscreen, clothing, smog, cloudy weather – all these factors influence how much sunlight we receive and how much vitamin D we can make and store.

During the winter months we are all more prone to coughs, colds and viral infections which require good stores of vitamin D to deal with.  In fact, one study on children showed vitamin D to be 8 times more effective than vaccines in preventing flu!

So it makes sense to supplement. Levels of supplementation range from 1000-3000iu per day though it is interesting to note that our bodies can make 20,000iu of vitamin D from sunlight before it naturally destroys any excess!

Any vitamin D supplements need to provide it in the form of Vitamin D3 as research has shown this form to be the most bioavailable and active within the body. It can be taken as capsules or as simple convenient oral sprays.  It is possible to get Vitamin D tests done fairly cheaply if you are unsure as to whether you might be deficient or not.

Now autumn is upon us perhaps it is time to start thinking about supporting your vitamin D levels through the coming winter months!

Either that, or move to a sunnier climate for six months of the year!