Vitamin D: The Essential Nutrient
Known as the “Sunshine Vitamin”, Vitamin D is one of the most essential nutrients required by our body. Sun is one of 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 the 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 the sun, food, and supplements.
- Exposure of skin to the 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 the 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 bodies 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 bodies 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 are mostly low. It is advisable to get one’s vitamin D levels tested and consult a physician to start taking supplements.