Vitamin D has become a popular vitamin in recent years due to its importance to health and vitality. It is actually a group of fat-soluble secosteroids which enhances intestinal absorption of calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphate and zinc. It is often referred to as the “sunshine vitamin” due to the human bodies’ ability to generate it when exposed to the sun.
In addition to the sun exposure, the level of vitamin D can be increased with consuming certain foods. Fish oils and fatty fish are some of the richest sources of the vitamin. For example, a tablespoon of the blue ice cod liver oil will provide you with more than 1300 IU. Consuming 4 ounces of fresh or raw herring will add approximately 1000 IU to your system. While eating a cup of raw maitake mushroom will deliver fairly high 780 IU per serving. Although fortified skim milk and eggs contain the vitamin, they are less abundant sources with 120 IU per cup of milk and 44 IU per egg.
Whether you are getting regular exposure to sunlight or take a spoonful of blue ice cod liver oil, maintaining a sufficient amount of vitamin can have several health benefits. These are 5 benefits which are attributed to sustaining recommended level of vitamin D:
BOOST BRAIN PERFORMANCE
MAINTAIN HEALTHY BONES
REDUCE THE RISK OF FLU
GET THAT SIX PACK
IMPROVE CELLULAR HEALTH
Although further research is needed, various studies indicate that low sunshine vitamin levels may have connection to the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Among type 2 diabetes patients vitamin D deficiency has negative impact on insulin, serotonin and glucose tolerance. A study conducted on infants revealed that regular intake of vitamin D lowered the risk of developing diabetes by 88%.
Low levels of vitamin D have also been linked to cardiovascular disease, heart health, pregnancy complications, elevated cancer risk, autism, arthritis, hair vitality and more. However, further research is needed to assess these links.