May 31, 2012

The Vitamin D Diet

  
   A diet high in Vitamin D can be mood lifting, melt away fat, and strengthen your bones.  D can be made by your body as long as you have exposure to the sunlight. However, sunscreen reduces your body’s ability to make D by 99%.  Even if you don’t use sunscreen which I highly advise against, it is tough to catch the right rays your body needs.  The sun in the early morning and evening, when you’re most likely outside is too weak to generate enough D and air pollution filters the UVB rays so less reach your skin.  So how do you get enough Vitamin D to be beneficial?  For starters find out if you are deficient in the Vitamin.  Next time you’re at the doctor’s office, ask for a 25-hydroxy vitamin D test or 25-OH D which will tell you if you are indeed deficient and by how much. 

   Every cell in your entire body needs vitamin D, vitamin D signals the body to either burn or store fat.  When vitamin D comes into the body it is like a key that revs up the body and burns fat.  Brain receptors need it to keep hunger in check and it also optimizes the body’s ability to absorb other nutrients especially calcium.  Keep in mind that the healthy adolescent or adult needs 200 - 400 IU's daily. You will see how easy it is to have the proper amount of vitamin D.
                                                          
Foods filled with D

Seafood

The most popular seafood, the fish is one of the best sources of vitamin D. Munching on 3-4 ounces of cooked wild salmon can provide adequate vitamin D. Although farmed salmon contain vitamin D, it is far too less in comparison to wild salmon. 3.5 ounces of wild salmon supplies around 400-700 units whereas the farmed salmon has around 200 units. Other good sources of vitamin D include tuna a, mackerel, sardines and herring.

Eggs

The sunshine vitamin is also present in eggs. However, if you are going to discard the egg yolk and eat only the white part, then the amount of vitamin D that you will get is zero. This is because, all the vitamin D in eggs is concentrated in the egg yolk. So, eating egg yolk in moderation (as it is high in cholesterol) can be a good remedy to combat vitamin D deficiency.

Cod Liver Oil

Many consider cod liver oil as an unpleasant option to improve vitamin D intake due to its bad taste. But, there is no denying the fact that cod liver oil contains vitamin D in substantial amounts. Thanks to its high vitamin D content, taking 1-3 teaspoons daily can be useful to keep rickets at bay. Moreover, other nutrients found in abundance in cod liver oil are vitamin A and healthy fats such as omega 3 essential fatty acids.

Beef Liver

Another way to obtain vitamin D would be to include beef liver. However, unlike fish, it does not contain a good amount of vitamin D. So, one cannot depend on beef liver to satisfy the recommended dietary requirements.

Foods Fortified with Vitamin D

Even if, milk is jam-packed with nutrients, it does not contain vitamin D. However, fortified milk is readily available in United States and Canada. In Canada, it is mandatory to supply vitamin D fortified milk. Food (infant formula ) that is specifically made for babies who have not yet completed 12 months must contain added vitamin D as per the law in both US and Canada. If you are looking for a health diet that gives adequate vitamin D, one can go for breakfast cereals. It is not difficult to get breakfast cereals that are enriched with vitamin D.

 

Mushrooms

Talking about vitamin D rich foods and one simply cannot forget to mention about shiitake and button mushrooms. These mushrooms are very good at absorbing sunlight. Most of the light that fall on these mushroom is absorbed. When exposed to sunlight, ergosterols (a type of steroid) in mushrooms play a crucial role in the synthesis of vitamin D. It is observed that mushrooms that get direct sunlight during the day are found to be an excellent source of vitamin D.



Vitamin D Deficiency
Deficiency of vitamin D obstructs the absorption of calcium, which can severely affect the bones and the joints. A diet lacking in vitamin D raises the risk of osteoporosis and joint pain. Calcium deficiency is often linked to a low intake of vitamin D. Vitamin D deficiency in children often causes rickets, a condition that is typically characterized by skeletal deformities. People who frequently drink iced tea and soft drinks, generally suffer from vitamin D deficiency.



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