Vitamin D: The Essential Nutrient
Known as the “Sunshine Vitamin”, Vitamin D is one the most essential nutrients required by our body. Sun is one the main sources, but there are some foods that do contain this super nutrient as well.
What is Vitamin D?
Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin responsible for absorption of calcium, magnesium and phosphates, among the other nutrients in the body. There are 3 ways by which one can get Vitamin D - exposure of skin to sun, food and supplements.
- Exposure of skin to sun: Midday, is the best time to get sunlight. This means that in a short span of time, your body will receive the required amount of sunlight to make Vitamin D.
- Food: Vitamin D is available in small amounts in mushroom, fortified cereals and juices, beef liver, cheese, and egg yolks. As such, there are not many other food sources rich in this wonder vitamin.
- Supplements: Since our body isn’t exposed to sun always and there are no other means to receive this nutrient, supplements are the best choice. One can always consult with a physician to understand the dosage of the supplement to be taken.
What are its benefits?
The sunshine vitamin has loads of benefits, a few of which are mentioned below.
- Helps in building strong bones: One of the well-known benefits of Vitamin D is strengthening of the bones.
- Fights diseases: Yes, this nutrient helps in boosting one’s immunity, thereby preparing the body to fight against various diseases.
- Reduces depression: Vitamin D helps in regulating mood and warding off depression. It is also seen that people with low levels of Vitamin D in their body are more prone to depression than with people who do not.
- Aids weight loss: Surprising enough, here’s one more reason for you to wander outside your house in the sunlight. Vitamin D helps in losing weight as well. Studies have shown that people with good levels of Vitamin D in their body tend to be able to maintain a good physique.
Who should take the supplements?
In the modern world where everyone is busy with their work schedule and it's hard to find time to take a walk under the sun, the levels of Vitamin D is mostly low. It is advisable to get one’s vitamin D levels tested and consult a physician to start taking supplements.