Many of us know that Vitamin D is good for our bones. This is because it regulates the absorption of both calcium and phosphorous – principal building blocks of our bones.
It might also literally may be the answer to all of your period problems. This is something I’ve written about more extensively here. Vitamin D plays a crucial role in cycle health, helping relieve PMS, irregular periods and infertility primarily due to its affect on the thyroid. Our bodies cannot produce adequate levels of thyroid hormone when we’re deficient in Vit. D, producing cascade of negative results.
Vitamin D deficiency, which as much as 40% of Americans might suffer from, might also play a role in the following illnesses, conditions and symptoms:
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Cold & Flu
- Cystic fibrosis
- Diabetes 1 and 2
- Eczema & Psoriasis
- Hearing loss
- Heart disease
- Inflammatory Bowel Disease
- Macular degeneration
- Multiple Sclerosis Crohn’s disease
- Muscle pain
- Periodontal disease
- Pre eclampsia
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Signs of aging
Vitamin D and Aging
With regard to signs of aging, I just read yesterday in a review of the new book The Telomere Effect that women with sufficient Vitamin D levels had more intact telomeres than women with a Vitamin D deficiency. The book is based on years of the authors’ research showing that telomeres play a significant role in keeping us young.
I find this ironic since we’re constantly told to stay out of the sun so that we do not age our skin, yet our bodies require sunlight to synthesize Vitamin D, which helps us stay biologically young.
(As a side note, I write about this not because I think we should be frozen in time at age 22, but because aging healthfully and slowly is a big part of aging gracefully and being able to enjoy a long, full and happy life!)
Vitamin D and Weight Loss
According to one study, people taking a daily Vitamin D supplement (in combination with Calcium) were able to lose more weight than those taking a placebo.
In another study, participants did lose weight, but it was not enough to be of statistical significance. That said, their heart disease markers did show significant improvement.
Good Vitamin D Sources
The sun is your best option! At least 20 minutes of direct exposure (no sunscreen) per day, and more for darker complexions.
Food sources include raw dairy, mushrooms, and wild caught fatty fish (like salmon).
Vitamin D Supplementation
Its likely that you will not be able to get enough Vitamin D from your food or given our modern lifestyle, the sun, on a daily basis. This is where supplements come in. Cod liver oil, is an excellent source of Vitamin D, and you get a dose of healthy fatty acids to boot! This is the one that I take:
You can also get it in capsule form.
You might also choose to supplement with Vitamin D directly, or combine Vitamin D with the cod liver regimen. In addition to fairly regular cod liver oil supplementation, I take Thorne Research 1,000 IU daily in the winter and a few times each week the rest of the year. According to Dr. Axe, adults should get 5,000 IU of Vitamin D daily, so I will also double up on the 1,000 IU a few times per week.
If only using Vitamin D tablets, you might consider buying the Thorne 5,000 IU instead.
*As with any new supplements, please check with your physician first.