The sun is out... your vitamin D should not!

Published : 02.08.2017 09:16:34
Categories : Healthy habits , Nutrition , Vitamins

We are now in the middle of summer and yet I still hear some friends mention that they have a vitamin D deficiency... this should not be the case when the sky is often clear!

The importance of Vitamin D

Vitamin D classically regulate calcium absorption and homeostasis. Calcium is of course important for our bone health / development and muscle function.

These vitamins also play an important role in preventing chronic diseases such as osteoporsis, seasonal depression, eczema, multiple sclerosis, heart disease, type 1 diabetes, cancers, seasonal flu, common cold, small ailments, bone loss, muscle degradation, muscle weakness, teeth health, tuberculosis and general energy level.

Unfortunately, any country in Europe north of France has on average 13-22% of the population with vitamin D deficiency ( <25 nmol="" l="" --25--="">

Primary “source” of vitamin D: the Sun!

I repeat, the SUN is the most important and cheapest way to increase your vitamin D in you system. The sun rays do not have vitamin D in itself, but its UV-B rays converts our body’s cholesterol into vitamin D. This is also why I do not recommend extreme low fat diets.

Therefore, whenever you have the opportunity, take off your top and bask in the sunbefore noon or after 17:00 (when the sun rays are not as powerful especially in more southern countries). Even better, go for a jog or do your workoutoutdoors!

The time required in the sun ranges between 15-120 minutes a day depending on how dark your skin is.

Don’t forget to open the windows! UVB rays does not go through glass so make sure you have direct sunlight at home whenever possible.

Food sources of vitamin D

  • Cod liver oil - 200 µg per 100 g
  • Fatty fish (tuna, salmon, herring, trout, sardine) - 6-25 ug per 100g
  • Egg yolk - 3 ug for 2 eggs
  • Shiitake mushrooms - 3-4 ug per 100g
  • Beef/veal liver - 1ug per 100g
  • Milk and butter - 1ug per 100g

Vitamin D2 vs D3

In humans, the important compounds of this element are vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) and vitamin D2 (ergochalciferol).

Vitamin D3: this is the most active form of vitamin D in the body produced by humans and also consumed through animal products. It is far better absorbed and utilised than vitamin D2.

Vitamin D2: although 3 times less potent than D3, this vitamin is produced by plants in response to UV rays.

Caffeine could reduce vitamin D

This is very sad news for me... studies have apparently shown that caffeine inhibit vitamin D receptors. It has been stated that over 300 mg per day of caffeine may lead to bone loss.

The good news is that you need a lot of coffee each day to reach that level of caffeine, which does not significantly impact our vitamin D levels. However, having a high caffeine habit in the northern countries could increase vitamin D deficiency!

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