Are you taking Vitamin D?

When it comes to getting all the nutrients your body needs to work & heal properly, I often tell you to get it from food. Eating whole, unprocessed & clean food is usually the best way to ensure that.

Some nutrients, however, may be hard for you to get enough of based on where you live, what is available to you & crazily enough, the lifestyle you are living.

Today, there is one nutrient that is most likely lacking in your diet and sadly, it is a very crucial one.

Vitamin D.

Vitamin-D

Vitamin D is actually a steroid hormone that effects bout 3,000 of the 30,000 genes in your body. It is critical in so many of your body’s functions. Vitamin D deficiency is linked to increased risk of osteoporosis, Multiple Sclerosis, High blood pressure, & the biggies:  Diabetes and Cancer. Low Vitamin D levels can also make it hard to lose weight and can interfere in hormone balance.

Conventional Medicine has been checking Vitamin D levels more & more over the last 10 years or so as it is coming to light how deficient we really are and the impact those deficiencies are having on our health. There are still some who aren’t making the connection. I had one physician tell me, “Oh, I don’t check anyone’s Vitamin D level because I know everyone is low.” When I asked if he then recommends supplementing to all his patients & he sadly said “no.”  ???

Here is where I ask you to be proactive in your health and take the steps needed to get enough Vitamin D.

You may be wondering why I’m telling you take a supplement when you could be getting it from food naturally. Well, there are some things you need to know…

The majority of the population is deficient in Vitamin D for various reasons.

1. We cannot get enough Vitamin D from food alone.

Most food that has been “enriched with Vitamin D” is the synthetic Vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol) This includes the ever popular “Vitamin D added” milk. Vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol), however,  is natural and is the same Vitamin D your body makes when it is exposed to the sun. (the BEST source of Vitamin D!) Vitamin D3 converts 500 times faster than Vitamin D2. Also, foods that may contain Vitamin D may be D2 or D3. D2 will be in plant based foods but D3 will only be found in animal-based sources. If you are a vegetarian, your food will not provide you with enough Vitamin D to keep your blood levels normal.

2. Sun exposure is the #1 way to get normal Vitamin D levels.

This is by far the best recommendation to getting Vitamin D. The problem that occurs with this is that many of us are not getting enough sun exposure a day. If you think back 100 years, most people spent a great deal of time outside per day. We simply don’t do today that as most people work indoors. The biggest reason for our limited sun exposure, in my opinion, is the extreme push for sunscreen. Convincing us that the sun will kill us with skin cancer has literally made people fear the sun and cover themselves with toxic sunscreen. While I know that skin cancer is very real, I believe it is more likely from the toxic sunscreen, poor diets and low Vitamin D levels.

Think back to when we were first bombarded with the need to use sunscreen. Have skin cancer rates come down? NO! They are on the rise! Now, this does not mean you should spend all day in the sun and not worry about burning. Yes, this is damaging. It simply means, allow yourself the exposure(see recommendations below) & then keep covered if you start to get a little red.

6 days of sunlight exposure without sunscreen can make up for 49 days of none. That’s powerful!

If you are one to not use sunscreen, it may still be a challenge for you to get enough exposure if you live in states that have fewer sunny days (like me in Michigan!)

So…your next best bet is a supplement.

First, confirm, if you can, that your level is low. Most blood tests will show a “normal” starting at 30 but this should actually be 50-70 for “Optimal level.” You will not be toxic of Vitamin D unless your level is >100.

Second, make sure your supplement is Vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) Do not choose one that has other additives. It should simply be the vitamin and whatever the capsule is made from (usually a gelatin base)

Third, depending on your level, 2000 units a day is a good place to start. Personally, I take 5000 units daily, year round.

Vitamin D is an important supplement for children as well, especially in the winter. 1000-2000 units daily for them can help them fight the flu & cold season. In the summer, let them roam outside in the sun without sunscreen. Coconut oil is a great natural sunscreen. If they start to get pink, have them cover up. By mid-summer they will be golden brown & can stay out for longer periods in the sun without burning.

PLEASE NOTE: No sunscreen will provide protection for all day constant sun exposure. Coconut Oil is no exception. Your body was not designed to withstand that. Watch your skin and act accordingly.

vitamin-d3-sun

Ideal Sun Exposure Time: If you live in a sunny & warm climate your sun exposure will probably be longer as you are used to more sun. In other climates, you may have to work up to longer times. Starting with 30 minutes/day until you can get a base tan and then working up to more. The tanner you are, the more time you can spend in the sun. To get adequate expose you should have 60% or so of your body uncovered. Example: A tank top or short sleeved shirt & shorts.

Again, if getting out in the sun everyday for 20-30 minutes is not possible for you, take a supplement. Living in Michigan, I try to get out in the sun in the summer when I can but still choose to take a supplement as well.

If you want more information about the risks associated with Vitamin D deficiency and the sources for some of the information shared here,  you can check them out here & here.

 

To our health,

Robin

 

 

http://www.motherearthnews.com/natural-health/low-levels-of-vitamin-d-zmaz08fmzmcc.aspx?PageId=2#ArticleContent

http://vitamind.mercola.com

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Robin Byers, R.N.

Robin Byers, R.N.

I am a Registered Nurse & a certified Holistic Wellness Coach. I help women control their blood sugar, lose weight & feel amazing without feeling hungry or deprived. Do you want to get healthy once and for all? The answer lies in controlling your blood sugar with organic whole food nutrition and holistic living. True healing does not come from the pharmacy but by nourishing our bodies the way God intended. Join me & you will restore your health & start living!

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