“Humans make thousands of units of vitamin D within minutes of whole body exposure to sunlight. From what we know of nature, it is unlikely such a system evolved by chance.”
~ Dr. John Cannell, Executive Director, Vitamin D Council.
In its natural form, vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin absorbed from ultraviolet radiation from the sun. Known as the sunshine vitamin, Vitamin D is a crucial ingredient for overall health. Unlike other vitamins, vit D functions like a hormone, and every single cell in the body has a receptor for it.
No life at all would be possible on this planet without the sun. To install fear and teach people to be afraid of the sun is harmful health advice that can hinder rather than help. Without a doubt, you must have a conscious approach to sunlight as sunburn or skin cancer is not the desired destination. Prolonged exposure does not increase vitamin D. The best way to absorb it is by exposing a large surface area (arms are great – suns out guns out!) to the sun for short periods of time, on a regular basis.
Although it isn’t common knowledge Vit D is found in certain foods such as fatty fish, (tuna, salmon and mackerel) eggs, cheese, and beef liver. Although it’s near impossible to get enough from food alone, it can also be taken in the form of supplements. (We recommend Metagenics Vitamin D3 1000 to our patients – be sure to ask your Chiropractor at your next visit). In fact, you need to have vitamin D at an acceptable level in order to absorb magnesium, which is an extremely important mineral in the body, involved with over 300 metabolic reactions – more on that in another newsletter.
Vit D protects against inflammation, lowers high blood pressure, improves brain and nervous system function, maintains a healthy musculoskeletal system along with strengthening the immune system. It is arguably the most potent antioxidant in the body, hands down! Given that everything is connected and works together, receiving adequate Vit D is essential.
Sadly, obtaining a Vitamin D deficiency isn’t rare. Often people don’t realize that they’re deficient, as symptoms are generally subtle. You may not recognize them easily, even if they’re having a significant negative effect on your quality of life.
A variety of factors influence your Vitamin D absorption, including your geographic location, skin colour, age, outdoor exposure, nutrition intake, genes and weather. The only way to know how much vit D you have and how much you need and if your current lifestyle is working is blood testing. Test and retest, don’t guess. And while you’re at it, mole maps – get regular skin checks! Knowledge is power.
Common signs of vitamin D deficiency
- Getting sick regularly
- Bone and Back Pain
- Impaired wound healing
- Bone loss, hair loss and muscle pain
Fortunately, a vitamin D deficiency is usually easy to change. As mentioned above, if you think you may have a deficiency, it’s important that you speak to your trusted health practitioner. Get your blood levels measured and skin checks up to date. Once you know your situation you will be able to take beneficial actions moving forward.
Get tested and assessed: blood tests and mole maps.
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