How much sun are you getting?
With the vast amounts of electronic devices, the times of going ‘outside to play’ are far from frequent. For example ‘Net**** and chill’ is a common saying. In addition children to adults watch far more television and play computer consoles than they had done previously. Society it seems is shifting us to stay indoors. That goes for me too, I still like to relax and stay in and watch a film or play some games. I think I need a taste of my own medicine, or in the best case scenario, this medicine being Vitamin D.
Now I am certainly not saying stay out in the sun until you look like this…
Those are unfortuantely my red lobster-like legs from a couple of years ago in Korea when I was determined as ever to get a tan. So this is where determination gets you. As it turns out people were handing out fans after I was leaving at the park and I gave the women a look of “I think I am a bit too late”.
Anyway morving swiftly on…
Here is the science, well, more technical stuff:
Vitamin D has different ways of being measured. One of them is International Units (IU) and another is micrograms (mcg). I will refer to these measurements in IU however just so you know 40IU = 1mcg.
The recommended amount of Vitamin D is 400-800IU, however recently health officials are claiming that anywhere from 2000-3000 would be more beneficial to our bodies and the main recommended amount of 400-800IU is INCORRECT – so we need more. Overdosing on Vitamin D is quite tricky to say the least. To put it in perspective, you need to be consuming more than 10,000IU or 40,000IU over the course of 3 or more months or even take 300,000IU in a day. To really give you an idea of how difficult it would be, we would need to consume around 250litres of milk a day for the course of 3 months – each litre of milk contains around 40IU (Reeve Le et al.). I bet you don’t like milk that much! –
You would probably live in the bathroom…
We can get Vitamin D through our diet, however to get the levels required is quite difficult. Foods that contain Vitamin D include most breakfast cereals, dairy products (yoghurt, milk), fish and beef liver. Ofcourse nowadays there are many people claiming to be lactose intollerant and will stop eating dairy altogether. With a reduction in the consumption of these foods containing Vitamin D coupled with the concept of staying indoors, it is likely you could be Vitamin D deficient.
Possible signs of being Vitamin D deficient include and are not limited to:
- Being overweight
- Staying Indoors
- Not Eating Dairy Products
- Lack of Energy
- Constantly Unwell
- Living in a cold climate (Far away from the Equator)
Vitamin D has many benefits although some of these require further research. It is believed by some doctors to help protect against diseases by boosting your immune system. It also provides you with a whole list of other benefits such as increased energy, aiding with bone health, reducing hair loss and muscular pain. It also helps you absorb Calcium – that is why the two are frequently found together in supplements. To be able to convert sunlight to Vitamin D the body requires cholesterol – so stop being afraid when you hear the term cholesterol! – Eat your whole eggs!
I am not a huge fan of taking supplements, unless absolutely necessary and your diet does not provide the adequate Vitamin D required. So if you want to become accurate with the needs of your body, if possible get a blood test. But if you can, try to increase your Vitamin D and take advantage of the Ultimate Vitamin D and get some sun!