What is vitamin D?
- Vitamin D is often thought of as the sunshine vitamin
- It is a fat-soluble hormone essential for growing and maintaining strong, healthy bones and supporting a strong immune system that helps protect against cancer.
- Too little vitamin D results in soft bones in children (rickets) and fragile, misshapen bones in adults (osteomalacia)
- Vitamin D helps regulate the immune system and the neuromuscular system. Vitamin D also plays major roles in the life cycle of human cells.
How does a vitamin D deficiency develop?
Many people rely on the sun for making enough vitamin D. However, there are some issues with that mentality:
- Many adults do not spend very much time outside.
- People with darker skin, older people and those living in Northern climates like ours produce less vitamin D from sunlight.
- People produce less vitamin D in fall and winter, when UVB rays are less intense.
- People who use sun protection or weigh more than average are more likely to suffer from vitamin D deficiency (Looker 2008).
The Trouble with Counting on the Sun for Vitamin D…
Thirty minutes of sun exposure to the face, legs, or back – without sunscreen — at least twice a week should give you plenty of vitamin D.
But this much direct sun exposure might also expose you to potentially dangerous levels of cancer-causing UV radiation. Physicians and scientists agree that people should use sun protection to prevent skin cancer and to reduce its toll on human health and health care costs (Gordon 2009).
Since supplements are readily available, you can stay safe in the sun and still maintain healthy levels of this important vitamin.
Experts recommend that you talk to your physician or pharmacist about testing your vitamin D levels, particularly if you are at risk of deficiency, and that you take supplements if needed.
We carry many options for Vitamin D supplements in our store. Here are just a few great brands that we have in stock:
As you can see, Vitamin D supplements come in a variety of forms (tablets, liquid, gummies, rapid dissolve tablets, etc.) so you can choose the method that works for you to make sure that you are satisfying your body’s needs!
PS – the first Thursday of each month is Customer Appreciation Day – come see us and save 20% on all of your regular-priced supplements!