Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that your body naturally produces when exposed to sunlight. It has immense benefits for your physical and mental health.
Whether you have a clinical deficiency or would simply like to have more of this calcium and phosphate-regulating vitamin in your system, follow these seven tips.
1. Spend More Time in the Sun
The easiest way to make sure you’re getting enough vitamin D is to spend more time in the sun. This vitamin is synthesized when UV rays hit the cholesterol in your skin cells. This allows your body to regulate the amount of calcium delivered to your bones, keeping them strong.
Getting enough sunlight will even help you recover from illnesses faster, as the rays trigger a serotonin boost in the brain, making you feel better almost instantly.
Getting enough sunlight is easy. A simple 20-minute walk every day can greatly influence your body’s vitamin D production.
You don’t even need to move to reap the benefits of sunlight — basking in the sun for 15-20 minutes will help to boost your vitamin D production in a similar way.
2. Take a Supplement
If you’re unable to spend time in the sunlight due to working a night shift or for any other reason, you might want to take a vitamin D supplement instead. Supplements are readily available and easy to find at almost any grocery store, pharmacy, or supplement retailer.
As long as you carefully follow the recommended dosages on your supplements’ packaging, you can take one with any meal of the day, and you get all the benefits of vitamin D without having to sweat!
Make sure your supplement of choice is easily digestible or dissolves in water. You don’t want to waste your time and effort with pills that your body can’t use.
3. Eat Fatty Fish
Who knew that the sea could be a source of vitamin D?
Work a serving of salmon, tuna, mackerel, or sardines into your diet to boost your vitamin D intake. These fish are all rich in vitamin D. They won’t be able to replace sunlight, but it’ll get you close!
A single can of sardines provides 40% of the daily value for adults.
Some other D-rich seafood includes cod, herring, anchovies, oysters, shrimp, clams, crayfish, and caviar.
4. Leave the Egg Yolks in Your Omelette
Egg yolks are an excellent source of vitamin D when they come from healthy chickens. Conventionally raised chickens don’t produce vitamin D-rich eggs due to their poor diet, living conditions, and lack of sunlight.
Because of this, make sure that you only get pasture-raised or cage-free eggs. They might be a little bit more expensive, but you’ll get that money back with flavor and vitamin D!
Everyone knows that leaving the yolks in always makes for a better scramble, so go for it. It’s the best way to support ethical chicken farming, boost your D levels, and have a tastier omelet!
5. Eat Fortified Foods
Fortified foods are food products that have been enriched (or fortified) with added micronutrients. This process is usually carried out by food manufacturers or governments whose aim is to minimize the number of deficiencies within their respective populations.
Some examples of commonly fortified foods include cow’s milk, orange juice, and cereal. These are always enriched with vitamin D, making them an excellent supplemental source when sunlight is less available.
There’s a reason why milk and cereal with a glass of orange juice is a common American breakfast!
6. Add Mushrooms to Your Grocery List
If you’re not a fan of mushrooms, you should consider giving them a second chance. Aside from fortified foods, mushrooms are the only available plant source of vitamin D.
Interestingly, mushrooms synthesize vitamin D the same way that humans do. So, mushrooms that grow with regular exposure to sunlight will be richer in vitamin D than their indoor-grown counterparts.
Because of this, you can’t always depend on every mushroom to take care of your vitamin D needs. Always make sure to check the source of your mushrooms (and all produce) so you know whether they were grown indoors or outside where sunlight is available.
7. Use a UV Lamp
UV lamps used to only be used for tanning beds and growing plants indoors. Recently, they’ve been marketed as a way to boost your vitamin D levels if you have a clinical deficiency or don’t spend enough time outdoors.
These lights can be pretty expensive but are worth the extra cash if you spend most of your time indoors.
If you do purchase a UV lamp, it’s recommended that you limit the amount of time you spend exposed to it. The UV bulb is direct, ultraviolet light and will burn your skin.
Getting enough vitamin D doesn’t have to be a complicated process. As long as you get plenty of sunlight and eat a healthy diet, your body will be able to regulate your calcium and phosphate levels exactly how it should, keeping you healthy.
If you can’t get enough sunlight, a simple supplement and good dietary choices will keep your body healthy and your mind at ease!
Caitlin Sinclair is the property manager at Prose West Cypress. With five years of property management experience and many more in customer service, she has a passion for her community and looks forward to making Prose West Cypress the place to call home.