Here is a guest post by Symatha Huges, an award winning chiropractic office management expert. In her article, she discusses the importance of Vitamin D in our diets. Our office offers an excellent source of vitamin d in the Standard Process Cataplex D. Here’s Symatha’s article…
Are You Getting Your Vitamin D?
Over the last few hundred years human lifestyles have changed. The industrial revolution resulted in more indoor work and less exposure to sunlight. Many societies around the world wore more clothing over the centuries, further reducing skin exposure to sunlight. These changes have brought with them significant reduction in the natural production of Vitamin D and subsequent diseases.
Countries responded to these changes by fortifying some foods with D2 and D3, examples include breakfast cereals, bread, pastries, oil spreads, margarine, milk and other dairy products. Initially, some scientists complained that nutritional fortifications and recommended supplementation of doses were not making up for the shortfall. These people were ignored, and sometimes ridiculed—however, over the last few years studies indicate that they may have been right after all.
Not that many foods contain vitamin D. Some fish, such as salmon, tuna and mackerel, as well as fish liver oils are considered to be the best sources. Some vitamin D is also present in beef liver, cheese and egg yolks. Most of these are Vitamin D3. Some mushrooms provide variable amounts of vitamin D2. Most of the food sourced vitamin D in the western diet comes from fortified foods—where vitamin D is artificially added. Most US milk is fortified with 100 IU/cup of vitamin D.
So what are the benefits of Vitamin D, you might ask.
It is crucial for the absorption and metabolism of calcium and phosphorous, which have various functions, especially the maintenance of healthy bones. It is an immune system regulator. Vitamin D may have a key role in helping the brain to keep working well in later life, according toa study of 3000 European men between the ages of 40 and 79. It can reduce the severity and frequency of asthma symptoms, and also the likelihood of hospitalizations due to asthma, researchers from Harvard Medical School found after monitoring 616 children in Costa Rica. It has been shown to reduce the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis in women. “A form of vitamin D could be one of our body’s main protections against damage from low levels of radiation, say radiological experts from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. Various studies have shown that people with adequate levels of vitamin D have a significantly lower risk of developing cancer, compared to people with lower levels. Vitamin D deficiency was found to be prevalent in cancer patients regardless of nutritional status, in a study carried out by Cancer Treatment Centers of America. Vitamin D has a role in insulin secretion and helps with blood pressure regulation.
If your body cannot produce enough vitamin D because of insufficient sunlight exposure, you will need to obtain it from foods and perhaps supplements. Experts say that people with a high risk of vitamin D deficiency should consume 1000 IS of vitamin D each day so that there is a good level of 25-hydroxyvitamin D in the blood stream. Elderly people, as well as people with dark skin, should consume extra vitamin D for good health.