Vitamin D is a water-soluble vitamin, which means it needs water to dissolve and to be used by our body. It is produced endogenously when ultraviolet rays from the sun hit the skin.


Vitamin D is called the Sunshine Vitamin. A cholesterol compound found in the skin, converts to a precursor of vitamin D. This is just one more reason why we NEED cholesterol. One full body UV exposure causing a slight pinkness in the skin is equivalent to an oral intake of 10,000–25,000 IU of vitamin D3.


Benefits

  • Aids in normal bone growth

  • Builds energy

  • Regulates heart action

  • Effective in clotting the blood

  • Allows for better absorption of minerals

  • Promotes healthy eyes

  • Nourishes the thyroid gland

  • Promotes calcium absorption in the gut

  • Helps prevent hypocalcemic tetany

  • Along with calcium, helps protect older adults from osteoporosis

  • With high doses, has been shown to reduce the risk of multiple sclerosis

  • Has anti-cancer benefits

  • Regulates insulin levels in diabetics

  • Supports cardiovascular health and regulates blood pressure


Foods that provide vitamin D

  • Butter

  • Eggs

  • Sardines

  • Fish liver oils

  • Tuna

  • Sunflower seeds

  • Raw milk


Herbs that provide vitamin D

  • Alfalfa

  • Bee pollen

  • Fenugreek

  • Red raspberry

  • Rose hips

  • Papaya


Signs of deficiency

  • Fatigue

  • Depression

  • Defective teeth

  • Infections

  • Imperfect bone structure

  • Muscle weakness and/or pain

  • Heart Disease

  • Increased risk of osteoporosis

  • Increased fractures

  • Linked to breast and colon cancer

  • Rickets in children/Osteomalacia in adults

  • Increased risk of schizophrenia

  • Increased risk of type 2 diabetes

  • Linked to autism, Parkinson's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and Alzheimer's disease

  • Increased risk of stroke and congestive heart failure


Avoid

  • Sunscreens with vitamin A. Government studies show spreading vitamin A on your skin may cause tumors and lesions to develop sooner with creams laced with vitamin A, aka as retinyl palmitate or retinol.

  • Sunscreens with oxybenzone, a synthetic estrogen, which penetrates the skin and can disrupt the hormone system.

Look for sunscreens with zinc oxide, 3% avobenzone or Mexoryl SX. They protect the skin from UVA radiation. Go to EWG.org to see how your sunscreen ranks.


Research Shows

Strength and balance are linked to optimal vitamin D levels. A 2006 study reported that 700 IU daily reduced falls in women by 46%.


Office of Dietary Supplements - Vitamin D. (n.d.). Retrieved May 14, 2020, from https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminD-HealthProfessional/

Hovis, B. S. (n.d.). Vitamins & Minerals. Retrieved May 11, 2020, from https://trinityschool.instructure.com/courses/499/pages/week-1-lecture-3-vitamins-and-minerals

Engelsen, O. (2010, May). The relationship between ultraviolet radiation exposure and vitamin D status. Retrieved May 14, 2020, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3257661/

Ameling, L. (n.d.). Women's Health. Retrieved May 14, 2020, from https://trinityschool.instructure.com/courses/578/pages/week-1-lecture-womens-health

Vitamin D and your health: Breaking old rules, raising new hopes. (n.d.). Retrieved May 14, 2020, from https://www.health.harvard.edu/newsletter_article/vitamin-d-and-your-health-breaking-old-rules-raising-new-hopes

EWG's 2019 Guide to Safer Sunscreens. (n.d.). Retrieved May 14, 2020, from https://www.ewg.org/sunscreen/top-sun-safety-tips/






MEDICAL DISCLAIMER

This content is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of such advice or treatment from a personal physician. All readers/viewers of this content are advised to consult their doctors or qualified health professionals regarding specific health questions. Neither Cynthia A. Barrington nor the publisher of this content takes responsibility for possible health consequences of any person or persons reading or following the information in this educational content. All viewers of this content, especially those taking prescription or over-the-counter medications, should consult their physicians before beginning any nutrition, supplement or lifestyle program.