Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin which plays a key role in growth and strength of our bones. It promotes absorption of calcium in the gut and helps in maintaining adequate calcium and phosphorus concentrations for normal mineralization of the bones.
Vitamin D, together with calcium, serves as the best treatment for osteoporosis in older people. It has others roles as well to play in our bodies like modulation of cell growth, immune system functions, neuromuscular functions and reduces bone loss and risks of fracture. This notable vitamin is naturally present in some foods- plant and animal- and is produced in our skin cells on exposure to sunlight. Also some foods are fortified with good quantities of this fat soluble vitamin to provide adequate amount with each serving.
If you are looking for good sources of vitamin D, check out these 3 remarkable ones-
- The best source of vitamin D known to mankind is the sun! It is likely to provide you with your requirement of Vitamin D than any other food or supplement. The UV rays from the sun strikes our skin and regulates Vitamin D synthesis. The fat cells under our skin are converted into Vitamin D which acts more as a hormone than a vitamin as it is produced inside the body itself when our skin comes in contact with bright sun light. Approximately 10 to fifteen minutes of exposure to sun for at least twice in a week is apt for fulfilling 60 percent of body’s vitamin D demands. But if you have a dark skin or live in an area where exposure to sun is limited, you better have Vitamin D supplements as well along with a nice sun bath to quench your body’s thirst for this sunshine vitamin. So move out in sun and give your bones a healthy treat of Vitamin D naturally.
- Salmon, especially wild salmon, is the richest food source for Vitamin D by far containing 400 to 900 international units of this vitamin in 3 ounce of serving. It has got nutrient density as 7.1 which are the excellent figures found in any other food. These quantities are very low in farm raised salmons which may also have high mercury and other contamination content. In the supermarkets, salmon is available in cans so check the label for “wild” salmon so that you serve a healthy and Vitamin D rich food along with great taste of salmon. Though who like fish can enjoy a number of delicious dishes made out of salmon which will provide this essential vitamin to their bodies easily.
- Milk, especially fortified milk contains 120 international units of Vitamin D per serving and has one fifth worth of Vitamin D for a day. It has got 24.4 daily value of this vitamin and a nutrient density of 3.6. Milk is also a good source of calcium so a glass of fortified milk daily or even twice a day make a good dosage of vitamin D and calcium for stronger, healthier bones and teeth. Even fortified milk products are good sources of Vitamin D though the percentages are quiet less.
Vitamin D is essential for all age groups and thus it is very important to have a vitamin D rich diet along with good exposure to sun. Apart from these, it is also found in plant foods like green pepper, strawberries, tomatoes, sweet and white potatoes and leafy greens. Good Vitamin D intake will result in strong and healthy bones and will keep you safe from risks of osteoporosis as you grow old.