The Benefits Of Vitamin D

There are many people who come t0 Aguirre Fitness in Henderson, NV, who simply want better health. It’s easy to understand why they’d want to learn more about nutrition, including vitamin D. On the other hand, why would you investigate the benefits of vitamin D if weight loss is your primary goal? There’s evidence that it can have a potential benefit for weight loss, too. Several studies show that increasing the amount of vitamin D blood levels may actually reduce the amount of body fat, aid in weight loss and limit the amount of weight you gain.

What is vitamin D?

Immediately, you’d say it’s a vitamin, since the name indicates that, but technically it’s not. It’s actually more similar to a steroid hormone. It’s made from cholesterol and like hormones, stimulates reactions by binding to receptors. Just like hormones, it’s a messenger. Not only does it affect the amount of fat the body produces, by limiting the creation of new fat cells, it suppresses fat storage, increases serotonin levels that aid in appetite control and increases testosterone that can aid fat loss.

Vitamin D also has other functions that can keep you healthier.

If you want stronger bones and teeth, you need calcium, but you also need vitamin D that aids in absorbing that calcium. Vitamin D is also important in maintaining healthy insulin levels, which means it can help prevent type 2 diabetes. Studies show it can help protect the body from multiple sclerosis and cancer. Perhaps that’s because it boosts the immune system, while protecting the brain, nervous system, cardiovascular system and lungs.

It’s very difficult to get adequate vitamin D from diet.

While there are many foods that are fortified with vitamin D, there are few that have it naturally. The easiest way to get vitamin D is from the sun. The body makes its own vitamin D through exposure to the sun. When the sun shines on the skin, the cholesterol that’s close to the surface is converted to vitamin D. The length of time you have to spend in the sun to get a sufficient amount depends on many factors. Your location, the time of year and how much melanin you have affects the amount that converts. Those in higher latitude areas, such as upper Canada, get far less sun than people who live in Las Vegas. The melanin in the skin blocks absorption, so the darker your skin, the longer you have to stay in the sun without skin block. Fair skinned people may only need a few minutes in the sun between 10 am and 2 pm, while others may need up to fifteen minutes.

  • One study shows that approximately 42% of the population are vitamin D deficient. Most of that group consists of people over 55, office workers, people with IBS, dark skinned people and vegetarians.
  • Food higher in vitamin D includes wild-caught salmon, tuna, sardines; mackerel, cod liver oil, beef liver, eggs and mushrooms. Don’t forget fortified foods like dairy and orange juice.
  • Safe sunning times vary by your skin color. If you’re extremely fair skinned, consider only a minute or two of unprotected sunlight at first. Skin damage and cancer come from overexposure to the sun, which causes sunburn.
  • If you live north of 37 degree latitude, it’s almost impossible to get adequate vitamin D from the sun. Make sure you eat adequate vitamin D foods or take a supplement.

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