Are you Getting Enough Vitamin D?
Vitamin D Facts
Last week I gave a conference to my cycling club, “Nutrition for Cyclists” and I asked the participants how many were taking Vitamin D. Only a small number put up their hands.
“You should all be taking vitamin D,” I told them.
Vitamin D is produced by the body when we are exposed to sunlight, but most of us live in areas where it is impossible to get enough vitamin D because of lack of sunlight. In winter the suns rays are on an angle and not strong enough. During the summer we use sunscreen, blocking vitamin D.
Research has determined that those living in the northern hemisphere have a much higher incidence of colon cancer than those living in the south due to a lack of vitamin D.
Vitamin D RDA set too low
The RDA (recommended daily allowance) was set at 400 IUs (international units) in the early 1900s to prevent rickets. Studies show that amount is woefully inadequate. We need at least 1000 IUs per day. Some foods contain vitamin D such as fatty salt water fish and egg yolks. Salmon has the highest amount of vitamin D although 3 ½ ounces contains only 360 IUs of vitamin D. It is easy to see that we can not get adequate amounts of vitamin D from our diet. Also, amounts needed increase with age, as our ability to absorb and assimilate most vitamins decreases with age.
A recent study (August 2010) done at Oxford University, published in Genome Research, shows increasing evidence that vitamin D deficiency also increases an individual's susceptibility to autoimmune conditions such as multiple sclerosis (MS), rheumatoid arthritis and type 1 diabetes, as well as certain cancers and even dementia.
On February 22nd, 2011, the University of California released the findings of a study showing that 4000 to 8000 IUs per day were needed to reduce by half the incidence of breast cancer, colon cancer, multiple sclerosis, and type 1 diabetes.
Prevention or Cure
Research is continuing for the amounts needed, however those doing the research are taking over 4000 IUs per day. Vitamin D toxicity is extremely rare, occurring with 40,000 IUs per day long term.
Much emphasis is placed on finding a cure for cancer and other diseases, but I believe that prevention is key. Add vitamin D to your daily routine!
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To your natural health!