Vitamin D is a nutrient that your body needs to absorb calcium and phosphorus, which are necessary for building bones. This vitamin is also essential for protecting older adults from osteoporosis by promoting healthy bone growth.
The best food sources of Vitamin D include cod liver oil, salmon, tuna fish, sardines, eggs and fortified milk products. However, it’s hard to receive enough Vitamin D through diet alone; in order to maintain an adequate supply of this nutrient in the body, dermatologists recommend getting 10-15 minutes of sun exposure (without sunscreen) three times per week during the summer months when the sun’s rays are strongest. When you limit your time in the sun or live in regions where there is less sunlight available year-round, it’s important to take a Vitamin D supplement.
What foods contain vitamin D?
Vitamin D can be found in many different types of healthy food. Some examples include eggs, whole milk, cheese, yogurt, and mushrooms. These are all sources that will help you meet the recommended daily allowance of vitamin D for adults according to the Food and Nutrition Board of the Institute of Medicine.
The health benefits of getting an adequate amount of vitamin D from food sources have been researched over the past several years. Today, it has been shown that vitamin D helps maintain bone health which can reduce your risk of developing osteoporosis as you get older. In fact, studies have also that this nutrient may play a role in reducing the risk of cancer, heart disease, and now diabetes.
Vitamin D is especially important for children who are growing rapidly as it plays a role in calcium absorption which will help you have stronger teeth and bones. As your kids grow up they may also have a lower risk of developing type 1 or type 2 diabetes because studies have recently shown that there is a link between vitamin D consumption and obesity.
Salmon is a very healthy meal option for people looking to get their vitamin D from food sources. A three-ounce serving of cooked salmon provides a child with more than 100 percent of the daily value of Vitamin D. There are also added benefits that come from eating this fish, such as its ability to lower your risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease because it’s an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids.
In addition, just one serving provides almost 40 percent of your daily recommended value of protein which will help you stay full longer. You’ll also benefit from a healthy dose of vitamins B6 and B12 it contains which can decrease inflammation in your body and improve nerve function.
2. Herring and sardines
These are also very healthy choices when looking to get your nutrient for the day. One serving of herring provides more than 100 percent of the daily value for vitamin D while sardines offer 80 percent of this nutrient. A three-ounce serving of either fish provides you with over 40 percent of your daily value for protein and both are very low in fat, which makes them an ideal choice if you’re on a low-calorie diet.
Mushrooms are one type of product that can naturally contain vitamin D. When mushrooms are exposed to UV light or sunlight during their growing process they absorb this nutrient, but you can also find it in mushrooms that are produced in a way that’s similar to how fish are raised. These types of mushrooms are typically grown indoors under artificial light sources, which makes them an excellent choice for people who live in regions where it’s not sunny year-round or simply want to include this type of product as part of an everyday diet.
As long as you choose mushrooms that have been grown outdoors naturally, they will provide you with 100 percent of the daily value for vitamin D. According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, one cup provides more than 10 percent of your recommended intake and also contains over 15 percent of your daily value for potassium.
4. Egg yolks
Eggs are one of the most nutritious, economical and readily available foods on the market today. A single large egg yolk provides your body with between 20 percent to 30 percent of your daily value for vitamin D. Eggs are also a great source of protein as well as B12 which is important for keeping your nerve cells healthy. Studies have also recently shown that eggs may provide some protection against type 2 diabetes because they help to maintain steady blood sugar levels.
The health benefits of eating eggs have been popularized in recent years after many studies supported claims that they do not increase risk factors associated with heart disease when consumed in moderation.
Milk is another highly versatile drink that can be included in any diet plan for people who want to get more vitamin D. Despite its reputation as an unhealthy drink, milk is a great choice because it provides between 30 percent and 40 percent of the daily value in each eight-ounce serving.
It’s also an excellent source of calcium which will help you maintain stronger bones and lower your risk of developing osteoporosis typically associated with aging. Many types of dairy products such as cheese and yogurt are good sources of this nutrient but do not contain anywhere near the amount you’ll find in a glass of milk.
The most obvious way to get more vitamin D is to spend time in the sunshine. However, this makes it difficult for people who live in regions with little sunshine throughout the year, such as Alaska and northern parts of Canada and the US, or during winter months when sunlight hours are shorter. Eating a diet that includes healthy foods that are high in this important nutrient is by far the easiest and best way to ensure you receive regular doses of this essential vitamin that your body constantly needs.