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How To Eat Vitamin D

Should You Avoid Fish Because Of Mercury

How to Eat More Foods with Vitamin D

Fish is one of the healthiest foods you can eat.

Thats because its a great source of protein, micronutrients, and healthy fats.

However, some types of fish can contain high levels of mercury, which is toxic.

In fact, mercury exposure has been linked to serious health problems.

This article tells you whether you should avoid fish over potential mercury contamination.

Muscle Problems That Are Thought To Be Caused By Statins

Its possible that muscle aches and pains that are often thought to be caused by statins are actually caused by a lack of vitamin D. Too little vitamin D can cause muscle weakness and tenderness in the bones these muscle problems seem very similar to the ones linked to statins.

Because a lack of vitamin D is so common, its likely that many people who are taking statins dont have enough vitamin D.

Your doctor can check if you have enough vitamin D in your blood using a simple blood test.

Good Sources Of Vitamin D

From about late March/early April to the end of September, most people should be able to make all the vitamin D they need from sunlight.

The body creates vitamin D from direct sunlight on the skin when outdoors.

But between October and early March we do not make enough vitamin D from sunlight. Read more about vitamin D and sunlight.

Vitamin D is also found in a small number of foods.

  • fortified foods such as some fat spreads and breakfast cereals

Another source of vitamin D is dietary supplements.

In the UK, cows’ milk is generally not a good source of vitamin D because it is not fortified, as it is in some other countries.

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How To Get Enough Vitamin D

Since relying on food alone for vitamin D is an exercise in futility , a daily vitamin D supplement really is necessary.* For that supplement to actually do its job for most normal-weight adults, it needs to check a couple of important boxes. Namely, it needs to provide vitamin D3 instead of vitamin D2 and pack 5,000 I.U. of it.

And since vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin, look for a supplement that is formulated with healthy fats, like mbg’s vitamin D3 potency+, which contains a combination of organic extra-virgin olive, flaxseed, and avocado oils.

How Much Vitamin D Is Enough

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Adults and children over the age of one need 10mcg of vitamin D per day. This is the same for everyone, including people at risk of vitamin D deficiency and women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Babies up to one year old need 8.5-10mcg of vitamin D per day. Find out more about how you can reach this from the NHS.

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The #1 Way To Tell If You Need More Vitamin D Says Dietitian

Reality check: Most people don’t get enough vitamin D. In fact, a 2018 review in Cureus revealed that 41.6% of adults in the United States are deficient. That’s pretty worrisome given that vitamin D plays such an important role in maintaining strong, healthy bonesand a deficiency can cause such symptoms as muscle weakness, bone pain, and mood changes. But many people overlook one of the telltale signs that they’re not getting enough of this nutrient. According to experts, a vitamin D deficiency can wreak havoc on your energy levels. So, if you notice you feel more tired than usual no matter how much sleep you’re getting, your low vitamin D levels may be to blame.

“Some vitamin D deficiency symptoms are commonly confused for symptoms of other conditions,” says Trista Best, MPH, RD, LD from Balance One Supplements. “The chronic fatigue associated with vitamin D may also be confused with the tiredness associated with aging or typical life stress. And the relief one feels from their fatigue once they correct a vitamin D deficiency is surprisingly significant.”

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Some Fish Are Extremely High In Mercury

The amount of mercury in fish and other seafood depends on the species and the levels of pollution in its environment.

One study from 1998 to 2005 found that 27% of fish from 291 streams around the United States contained more than the recommended limit .

Another study discovered that one-third of fish caught on the New Jersey shore had mercury levels higher than 0.5 parts per million a level that could cause health problems for people who eat this fish regularly (

10 ).

In fact, larger, predatory fish may contain mercury concentrations up to 10 times higher than the fish they consume. This process is called biomagnification .

U.S. government agencies recommend keeping your blood mercury levels below 5.0 mcg per liter .

One U.S. study in 89 people found that mercury levels ranged from 2.089.5 mcg per liter, on average. A whopping 89% had levels higher than the maximum limit .

Additionally, the study noted that higher fish intake was linked to higher mercury levels.

Whats more, many studies have determined that people who regularly eat larger fish such as pike and perch have higher levels of mercury (

23 ).

One study in 1,800 men found that those with the highest levels of mercury were twice as likely to die from heart-related problems than men with lower levels .

Nevertheless, the nutritional benefits of fish likely outweigh the risks from mercury exposure as long as you moderate your consumption of high-mercury fish .

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People At Risk Of Vitamin D Deficiency

Some people will not make enough vitamin D from sunlight because they have very little or no sunshine exposure.

The Department of Health and Social Care recommends that adults and children over 4 take a daily supplement containing 10 micrograms of vitamin D throughout the year if they:

  • are not often outdoors for example, if they’re frail or housebound
  • are in an institution like a care home
  • usually wear clothes that cover up most of their skin when outdoors

If you have dark skin for example you have an African, African-Caribbean or south Asian background you may also not make enough vitamin D from sunlight.

You should consider taking a daily supplement containing 10 micrograms of vitamin D throughout the year.

Should I Take A Vitamin D Supplement

Vitamin D: How Much Food Would You Have to Eat?

There are a number of vitamin D supplements available. And while its often important to get certain nutrients from food, this rationale doesnt apply to vitamin D, according to Tan. The way we get vitamin D naturally is from UV exposure, she says. This is controversial, because UV exposure has risks as well.

To know if you need a vitamin D supplement, you first need a blood test to determine your vitamin D level. How much you might need to supplement depends on this number, says Tan. Only take a vitamin D supplement if recommended by your doctor based on the outcome of this blood test, and take only the recommended amount.

People who could be at risk for vitamin D deficiency include:

  • People who live in climates with less sunlight.
  • People who dont naturally get much sun exposure.
  • Older populations who require more vitamin D daily.
  • People with darker skin, as they dont synthesize vitamin D from the sun as easily.

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Synthetic Analogs Of Vitamin D

  • Maxacalcitol is the first analog found to have a wider therapeutic window than 1,252D3.

  • Calcipotriol is derived from calcitriol was first discovered during trials involving the use of vitamin D for treating osteoporosis.

  • Dihydrotachysterol is a synthetic form of vitamin D that many consider superior to natural D2 and D3. It becomes active by the liver without needing to go through hydroxylation in the kidneys.

  • Paricalcitol is also derived from calcitriol. It is the first of the new vitamin D analogs to be approved for secondary hyperparathyroidism and differs from calcitriol in that it lacks the exocyclic carbon 19 and has a vitamin D2 side chain instead of a vitamin D3 side chain.

  • Tacalcitol is a derivative of vitamin D3. It is known to hinder keratinocytes in the skin.

  • Doxercalciferol D2) is a prodrug and must be activated in vivo. It is less toxic than 1 D3 when administered chronically.

  • Falecalcitriol 2-26, 27-F6-D3) is approved for secondary hyperparathyroidism in Japan. It is more active than calcitriol because of its slower metabolism.

Cereal Can Be Fortified With Vitamin D And Oatmeal Offers Fiber

A packet of unsweetened, fortified oatmeal can add a solid dose of vitamin D to your diet. Ready-to-eat fortified cereal typically gives you 40 IU of vitamin D per serving, per the NIH, but it may provide more if you choose a more heavily fortified cereal, like Raisin Bran, which has 60.2 IU per cup, notes the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Fortified cereal can be a solid base for a nutrient-rich, high-fiber meal especially if you add fortified low-fat or fat-free milk to your bowl for an extra 60 IU per half cup. Or you can be more adventurous and make a breakfast cookie that includes both fortified cereal and vitamin Dfortified margarine.

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Why Mercury Is A Problem

Mercury is a heavy metal found naturally in air, water, and soil.

Its released into the environment in several ways, including through industrial processes like burning coal or natural events like eruptions.

Three main forms exist elemental , inorganic, and organic .

People can be exposed to this toxin in a number of ways, such as breathing in mercury vapors during mining and industrial work.

You can also be exposed by eating fish and shellfish because these animals absorb low concentrations of mercury due to water pollution.

Over time, methylmercury the organic form can concentrate in their bodies.

Methylmercury is highly toxic, causing serious health problems when it reaches certain levels in your body.


Mercury is a naturally occurring heavy metal. It can build up in the bodies of fish in the form of methylmercury, which is highly toxic.

How To Take Vitamin D3

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This article was co-authored by Claudia Carberry, RD, MS. Claudia Carberry is a Registered Dietitian specializing in kidney transplants and counseling patients for weight loss at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. She is a member of the Arkansas Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Claudia received her MS in Nutrition from the University of Tennessee Knoxville in 2010.There are 10 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 24,369 times.

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin produced in the body when sunlight is exposed to your skin. You can also get vitamin D naturally in food or take it as a supplement. The easiest and most efficient way to get vitamin D is through sunlight, but if you aren’t getting enough through diet and sunlight, you can take supplements of vitamin D3 to increase your levels.XResearch sourceXTrustworthy SourceOregon State University Linus Pauling InstituteResearch center dedicated to promoting optimal health through cutting-edge nutrition research and public outreachGo to source

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Eat Mushrooms For A Versatile Vitamin D Punch

While mushrooms don’t naturally offer a high amount of vitamin D, some are treated with UV light, providing a larger dose of the nutrient as a result. The vitamin D amounts will vary depending on the amount of UV light the mushrooms are exposed to, according to the Agricultural Research Service. A serving has between 124 and 1,022 IU per 100 grams .

Growers such as Monterey Mushrooms produce varieties high in vitamin D, but you have to read the labels. Once you have them, add sautéed mushrooms to eggs or fish for a meal even richer in vitamin D. Or make a more substantial mushroom dish, such as veggie-stuffed portobellos.

What Fruits And Vegetables Are High In Vitamin D

Vegetables high in vitamin D include mushrooms which have been exposed to sunlight. Other vegan foods high in vitamin D include fortified soy products like tofu, soy milk, and soy yogurt, fortified cereals, and fortified juices.

Unfortunately, no fruits are high in vitamin D, and fortified orange juice is currently the only fruit product commonly sold with vitamin D.

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Nutrients To Eat For Better Sleepand How To Incorporate Them Into Your Diet

Sometimes it can be tough to get enough sleep. In fact, a recent National Sleep Foundation poll found that a staggering 84% of adults admitted feeling tired during the weekmainly because they don’t sleep well, or they aren’t getting enough hours of shut-eye period. Beyond feeling more alert, there are a slew of health benefits associated with getting enough rest, including supporting a healthy immune system, healthy skin and a healthy heart. However, upping your hours of sleep each night can be easier said than done.

Lucky for us, researchers have identified specific micronutrients and other substances in food that show promise for the tired and weary among us. “The more interesting studies are in people who have some kind of sleep complaint, but not an actual disorder,” says Michael Grandner, Ph.D., director of the Sleep and Health Research Program at the University of Arizona in Tucson, who studies nutrition’s influence on sleep. “They show that you can somewhat normalize or at least make sleep better. It’s hard to draw firm conclusions, but they are proof of concept.” Read on for five nutrients that can help you catch more zzz’s at night.

Biology Of The Sunshine Vitamin

What to Eat for More Vitamin D

Vitamin D is unique because it can be made in the skin from exposure to sunlight. Vitamin D exists in two forms. Vitamin D2 is obtained from the UV irradiation of the yeast sterol ergosterol and is found naturally in sun-exposed mushrooms. UVB light from the sun strikes the skin, and humans synthesize vitamin D3, so it is the most natural form. Human beings do not make vitamin D2, and most oil-rich fish such as salmon, mackerel, and herring contain vitamin D3. Vitamin D that is ingested is incorporated into chylomicrons, which are absorbed into the lymphatic system and enter the venous blood. Vitamin D that comes from the skin or diet is biologically inert and requires its first hydroxylation in the liver by the vitamin D-25-hydroxylase to 25D. However, 25D requires a further hydroxylation in the kidneys by the 25D-1-OHase to form the biologically active form of vitamin D 1,252D. 1,252D stimulates intestinal calcium absorption. Without vitamin D, only 1015% of dietary calcium and about 60% of phosphorus are absorbed. Vitamin D sufficiency enhances calcium and phosphorus absorption by 3040% and 80%, respectively.

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Eat Foods That Are Rich Sources Of Vitamin D

“Vitamin D is only found naturally in some foods, such as some fatty fish , fish liver oils, eggs from hens that have been fed vitamin D, and mushrooms exposed to sunlight or UV light,” says Greene.

However, she points out that most vitamin D found in food is added via artificial fortification. These foods include cereals, dairy products, and orange juice.

Another trick? “Don’t skip the yolk in your eggs, they have 37 international units of vitamin D per yolk,” says Tamar Samuels MS, RDN, NBC-HWC, and co-founder of Culina Health.

For context, the recommended amount of vitamin D for people ages 19 to 70 years old is about 15 mcg daily, per the National Institutes of Health.

“Vegans and vegetarians, as well as those who do not like fish, may be at risk for not getting enough Vitamin D,” says Greene.

Vitamin D And Your Health

Vitamin D, nicknamed the sunshine vitamin because your body produces it after sun exposure, has long been known to help build strong bones by increasing the body’s absorption of calcium and phosphorous. But beginning in 2000, research into vitamin D’s role in other health conditions began to expand rapidly.

While there is strong support for vitamin D’s role in bone health, the evidence that it prevents other health conditions is not yet conclusive, says Dr. Manson. “Research on vitamin D and calcium supplementation has been mixed and, especially when it comes to randomized clinical trials, has been generally disappointing to date,” she says.

Dr. Manson was a principal investigator of the recently published Vitamin D and Omega-3 Trial , a large study . The study found that those taking a vitamin D supplement did not lower rates of heart attack, stroke, or cancer. However, among people who later developed cancer, those who took vitamin D supplements for at least two years had a 25% lower chance of dying from their cancer compared with those who received a placebo.

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Nature Made Vitamin D3 1000 Iu

If you’re looking for a budget-friendly way to increase your vitamin D intake, Nature Made’s vitamin D supplement certainly fits the bill.

“It’s a very affordable supplement that could fit into most families’ budget,” says Cheryl Mussatto MS, RD, LD, author of The Nourished Brain.

“This brand is also free of gluten, artificial flavors, and colors. For better absorption, it encapsulates their vitamin D supplements with soybean oil. Nature Made has also been ranked as the number one pharmacist recommended vitamin and supplement brand and USP verified in 2020. The company has a strong reputation for the potency and dependable quality of its supplements.”


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