What is the big deal about vitamin D ? A walk outside in the sun may have more benefits than you think! Vitamin D (the sunshine vitamin) although mainly known to help in the absorption of calcium to help maintain strong bones has been linked as a protective factor in cancer, depression, diabetes, heart disease and many autoimmune diseases. More research is being done to look at vitamin D and the correlation between upper respiratory tract infections, MS, Lupus, and Fibromyalgia.
How do I get enough Vitamin D in the winter? GOOD QUESTION! It is recommended to get 10 minutes of sunshine per day at least 3 times per week. For those of us living in the Northwest or other areas of the country with long dark winters this can be a problem.
Some dietary sources of Vitamin D include
- Fortified milk
- Cod liver oil
Getting checked our for a vitamin D deficiency A routine blood draw can be done to test vitamin D levels. In our facility, Surgical Bariatrics Northwest, we typically screen our patients. To our surprise many people are deficient in Vitamin D. By ensuring that they are getting proper vitamin D through supplementation patients are more likely to feel better. Some state they have more energy, less pain and just feel better. You can overdose on vitamin D. If you are unsure of how much to take make sure to talk to your healthcare provider about supplementation.