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Have You Had Your “D” Checked Lately?

Common health issues that can develop when our vitamin D levels are low are depression, lowered immune system, increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease, increased risk for cancer, cognitive impairment, asthma in children and bone pain (Rickets). Learn more…

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Have You Had Your “D” Checked Lately?

Have You Had Your “D” Checked Lately?

Did you know that vitamin D is the only vitamin that your body is capable of producing on its own? All other vitamins our bodies need must be consumed through our diet. Vitamin D is also classified as a steroidal hormone. Our body produces vitamin D when cholesterol in our blood is exposed to UV-B light sources, ideally from the sun. Lack of sunlight can result in a drop in our D levels and eventually lead to a variety of health issues. This is a typical response that affects many of us during the winter months or in areas that have less-than-ideal sunshine, such as the Pacific Northwest or the United Kingdom.

Common health issues that can develop when our vitamin D levels are low include depression, lowered immune system, increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease, increased risk for cancer, cognitive impairment, asthma in children and bone pain (Rickets). Vitamin D is essential for calcium regulation in our blood and bones. The normal range for the standard 25-hydroxy vitamin D test is between 30 and 100 ng/ml. Optimal levels are between 40 and 60 ng/ml.

Approximately 90 percent of our vitamin D comes from sun exposure and 10 percent from our diets. Unfortunately, fear of exposure to the sun’s harmful rays, overuse of sunscreen and spending more time indoors has created an upsurge of low vitamin D levels. As a result, vitamin D supplementation is at an all-time high and so are the health issues that stem from its lower-than-ideal blood levels.

As little as 15 to 20 minutes per day of direct sun exposure can generate as much as 10,000 IU of vitamin D. In order to get the most out of this practice, we need to expose as much skin as possible to the sun. Practically speaking, this is not easy to accomplish during the winter months, but even going outside a few times a day facing the sun for a short time can help. Other options include the use of light boxes. These units emit UV-B rays and have been shown to raise your vitamin D levels, as well as your mood. If you are a desk jockey, night shift worker or simply find it difficult to get out into the sun, you should consider using one; the benefits are worth it.

If you need to take a vitamin D supplement, it is also important that your Vitamin A and vitamin K2 intake are also at good levels. There are a few products that combine K2 along with D. Vitamin A is quite easy to work into the diet and supplements are seldom needed. The best sources of vitamin A are eggs, orange and yellow vegetables and fruits, and beta-carotene rich foods such as broccoli, spinach and most leafy green vegetables.

By incorporating these simple suggestions into your daily regime, you can make a powerful impact on your physical and mental health.

See referenced disclosure (2) (4) at http://blog.americanportfolios.com/disclosures/ 

About The Author

Matt Kansy RD LLC

 

Corporate Wellness Programs and Education Services 
860.305.9080 
I am a Registered Dietitian (RD) and certified personal trainer and have spent the last 18 years training myself to become well versed in a wide range of healthcare and wellness areas. The foundation of my practice is rooted in the lifestyles of our ancestors. Life before the electric light bulb (effects on sleep) chairs and cars (reduced physical movement) and unhealthy processed foods. I promote and teach about how to prepare and eat nutrient dense real food, get regular physical activity and quality restorative sleep. All in ways that work in conjunction with your current life situation and that can even save you money. By looking to our past and embracing the fundamentals of how humans used to live and combining it with modern-day technical advancements, we can address the vast majority of modern day health issues. By using these lifestyle fundamentals we can successfully treat up to 90% of our modern day illnesses and disease. A healthy blend of technical evolution and ancestral know-how.

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