This week I did an experiment. I didn’t go fully back to what I used to eat 3+ years ago but with the nibbles appearing in the office and a night out at the end of the week, I thought I’d try and see how my body reacted to going partially back to my diet of old. Let me tell you, I felt like crap! I felt lethargic, my tummy felt bad, my body started producing mucus in my nose and throat. I felt ill!
Now, as I start to come back to eating fresh, clean foods, I’m beginning to feel much much better but it showed how a change in diet can create such a negative change in health. It got me thinking how people, and I used to be like this, can go through life not realising that their daily diet is making them sick. It’s not until you experience the contrast that you realise the effect.
Vitamin D is essential for good immune system function and it also helps maintain bone health. Deficiency can result in poor immune system and issues such as osteomalacia (soft bones) or osteoporosis (fragile bones)
How do we get Vitamin D?
The primary source is via sunlight on our bare skin.
Vitamin D is generated with exposure to UV-B rays
UV-B rays are blocked by glass so being behind a window won’t work
When in hot climates such as when you’re on holiday, 15 minutes of unprotected sunlight exposure is enough to produce enough Vitamin D for the whole day.
In winter months and the further away from the equator you live, the longer the exposure you require. Skin colour can affect how much vitamin D is produced too. Darker skin is there to protect against the sun, therefore it needs longer exposure to create the same amount of Vitamin D.
Sunscreen, even as low as factor 15, can reduce the UV-B exposure by up to 90-95%
Very few foods naturally contain Vitamin D although some can be fortified with it, meaning it’s added to the food.
If you can’t get good sunlight exposure, you will need to supplement. Now Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin which means you will need to have some fat in your diet to allow the vitamin to be absorbed.
Adults need around 600 IU (International Units) of Vitamin D each day although some studies say that we may need up to 2000 IU
The better quality supplements of Vitamin D are the capsules where the vitamin is suspended in oil. This helps the absorption.
Have a great week