Wintertime in the Northern Hemisphere can be difficult for our mental and physical health. Thanks to the time change, the majority of the population wakes up in the dark and leaves work in the dark. Making it very difficult for us to absorb any natural sunlight. This unfortunately leads to a vitamin D deficiency in the majority of the population.
Vitamin D is known as the sunshine vitamin because our body creates it after absorbing sunshine through our skin. It’s an extremely important vitamin for bone health because our bodies can’t absorb calcium without it, which leads to stealing it from our bones, increasing the risk of osteoporosis and fractures.
In more recent studies, doctors and scientists have realized Vitamin D plays a much larger role than just bone health. Research has shown that Vitamin D helps with gastrointestinal tract health by keeping the microbes in the gut healthy and happy. A healthy gut is vital for fighting off infections, diseases and keeping our immune system strong.
So how do we get Vitamin D in the wintertime when we aren’t outside as much or seeing as much daylight?
You can get vitamin D through diet, but not many foods are enriched with the vitamin. Salmon, mackerel and tuna will give you the highest dosages and orange juice has a little bit added. But your best bet is to supplement with it. You can find a vitamin D supplement in any store that sells vitamins and it comes in different doses.
Every country seems to have a different recommended dosage, but the avg is 800-1000IU per day. With 2000IU being your max dosage, which is more recommended for someone with darker skin tone because they’ve shown to be the most deficient during the winter. And the reason I say “max” dosage is because there is such thing as TOO MUCH vitamin D. When vitamin D is too high, calcium levels in the blood go up and that can lead to kidney disease, so don’t go overboard with your supplementation.