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Are you getting enough Vitamin D?

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I’ll cut to the chase here –  chances are, the answer is no. Vitamin D is one of the most important vitamins to our bodies’ functioning, and most of us come nowhere close to having high enough serum levels. That is, the amount of vitamin D circulating in our bloodstreams.

How do you check your vitamin D levels? Well, honestly, it’s a blood test, and most of us aren’t going to do a blood test to see if we’re getting enough vitamin D, no matter how important it is. But, there’s a simpler way to guess.

Sources of vitamin D include fatty fish, and to a lesser degree, eggs and fortified dairy products. So, vegans and vegetarians are S.O.L. in terms of dietary vitamin D. See also: those who don’t like fish or milk. And really, you can’t get enough vitamin D from food. Luckily, your body is able to synthesize this crucial hormone from sunlight! Fantastic!

Oh, what’s that? You don’t get a lot of sunlight? Yeah, me neither. For starters, I’m pale and burn easily, so I tend to wear sunblock. And beyond that, in the spring and summer, I don’t get outside regularly. In the winter…well, it doesn’t matter because where I am on Earth isn’t close enough to the sun for the UV light to penetrate adequately during the winter. Never mind the fact that I’m mostly just camped out in front of a computer, or sitting in front of my TV, controller in hand. There are bosses to kill, and worlds to save, man!

Anyway, if you still aren’t sure about whether or not you’re getting vitamin D (which, I’m sure you’ve realized…you’re most likely not), let’s look at some deficiency symptoms!

Vitamin D deficiency symptoms are pretty broad, and range from general digestive and gut issues, to achey bones, fatigue and being overweight. So, this is basically the entire population. But here’s the thing, those symptoms are indicative of far greater issues. If you don’t have enough vitamin D, then cell production isn’t running smoothly, your bones aren’t absorbing calcium properly, and your immune system isn’t function properly.

So, how do I get enough? Supplementation seems to be the answer. There are two forms available: D2 and D3. Studies have shown that D3 is more bioactive, and now it is available in a vegan form – so everyone wins! Basically, I would strongly recommend D3. And what type? I’ve linked to some of my favorites below! And yes, I’ve actually tried all of these. I tend to go for the gummies (honestly) most of the time, because I motivate myself with treats.

If you want to learn more, stay tuned for the upcoming podcast! For immediate gratification, check out the links below.

Further Reading:

http://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/vitamin-d/evidence/hrb-20060400

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/05/28/vitamin-d-deficiency-signs-symptoms.aspx

http://www.marksdailyapple.com/deconstructing-vitamin-d/#axzz3UO2B5IP4

http://www.dietitians.ca/Your-Health/Nutrition-A-Z/Vitamins/Food-Sources-of-Vitamin-D.aspx

http://www.drfuhrman.com/library/vitamin_d2_d3.aspx 



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