Time for Vitamin D!
I’m seeing a lot of patients feeling the winter ‘blahs’ and, when I ask them if they are taking their vitamin D, most are not. It is the “sunshine” vitamin and when we are lacking the sun or it is too cold to go outside, our levels deplete. With most blood work I see, people are depleted in this vitamin. It is essential for healthy bone formation, is immune modulating, has anti-cancer properties, and is mood enhancing!
The body makes this vitamin when the skin is directly exposed to the sun. That is why it is often called the “sunshine” vitamin. Most people meet at least some of their vitamin D needs this way. However, with the winter months quickly approaching, it is a good time to start increasing your vitamin D stores and this usually occurs with the help of a supplement.
Very few foods naturally contain it. As a result, many foods are fortified with vitamin D. Fortified means that vitamins have been added to the food.
Vitamin D is found in the following foods:
Fortified milk (all milk in the U.S. is fortified with vitamin D)
Fatty fish (such as tuna, salmon, and mackerel)
Fortified breakfast cereals
Whenever possible, I would encourage you to check the Nutrition Fact Panel on the food label.
It can be very hard to get enough “sunshine” from food sources alone. As a result, some people may need to take a vitamin D supplement. If you have any questions about your personal need, please come to speak to us at the clinic!
-Rachel Schwartzman, BA, ND, Doula