Vitamin D is an extremely important nutrient and hormone that our bodies make when exposed to sunlight. Despite its many health benefits, the United States is now suffering from a vitamin D deficiency epidemic.
Researchers warn that vitamin D deficiency can lead to increased risk of osteoporosis, chronic pain, depression, rheumatoid arthritis, and several other negative health effects. Scientists even warn of increased risk of heart disease that can result from not getting enough vitamin D.
The benefits of vitamin D are tremendous. If you want healthy bones, make sure you’re getting enough. Vitamin D helps to prevent osteoporosis and is vital to maintaining healthy bones.
Vitamin D also acts as an anti-inflammatory. While a lack of vitamin D can lead to inflammatory diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, making sure you’re getting enough can help to prevent arthritis by preparing the body to ward off such diseases.
Getting enough vitamin D can also improve cognitive health, mood, eye health and immune system function — there is even evidence to suggest vitamin D improves outcomes with COVID-19 patients.
Safe exposure to sunlight will produce vitamin D in your body naturally. But many Americans are just not getting enough sunlight. In addition to changing that, you can make sure that you are getting enough vitamin D in your diet by incorporating foods rich in vitamin D and by supplementing with a multivitamin or vitamin D supplement.
The Mayo Clinic recommends 600 international units of vitamin D daily for people between 1 to 70 years old. Make sure you’re checking your labels and that you consult with your doctor about serious changes in your diet.