The importance of Vitamin D

Vitamin DAre you getting enough Vitamin D?

Did you know that there is a risk these days of Vitamin D becoming deficient in our diets, as many people are suffering from so called ‘fat phobia’ and avoiding the very foods that are rich in this vitamin.

The other ways we obtain vitamin D is through exposure to sunlight, but with so much press associated with skin cancer many people are shying away from exposing their bodies to the sun or using very high levels of sun block to protect their skin from the harmful UVB & UVA levels.

What foods contain Vitamin D

Deficiency is seen more often in northern countries, or where tradition dictates that the body is well covered by clothes, such as in parts of the Islamic world.

Deficient in Vitamin D
Results in joint pains or stiffness, backache, tooth decay, muscle cramps and hair loss.

Excess of this Vitamin
May cause a loss of appetite, weight loss, nausea, headaches, depression and deposits of calcium in the kidneys.

What foods contain Vitamin D
Main sources of vitamin D are found in dairy, cottage cheese, lean meat, meat organs, fish, shellfish and eggs. Our daily requirement is 400IU and research suggests that exposure to sunlight for 20 minutes per day on 50-80% of our body would give us this amount.

How does Vitamin D benefit us?
1. It helps to regulate blood levels of both calcium and phosphorous.
Calcium is important for the heart, helps to clot blood and promotes healthy skin, bones, teeth and nerves. Helps with the contraction of the muscles and maintains the correct acid-alkaline balance in the body. Phosphorous forms and maintains teeth and bone, builds muscle, helps maintain pH of the body and aids in energy production.

2. Accelerates absorption of calcium from the gastrointestinal tract.

3. Helps to prevent osteoporosis where the bones become porous and break easily.

4. Protects against many types of cancer including breast, prostate and colon.

Sun exposure protect your skin
Don’t avoid the sun but practice responsible sunbathing by using an organic sunscreen which contains natural ingredients

The department of health recommends that we use a sunscreen with a minimum rating of SPR 15. However it is impossible to find a sunscreen with a high SPR which doesn’t use at least one of the following potentially harmful chemicals; Octal methoxycinnamate, benzophenone, benzophenone 3, zinc oxide and titanium oxide – for more information on these harmful chemicals go to: www.health-reports.co.uk

These chemicals are potentially harmful and are absorbed through the skin, putting extra stress on our bodies and leaving us vulnerable to their effects. At the moment standard sunscreens are classified as a cosmetic which in effect means they do not need to be tested on animals by law. In 1998, the UK introduced a ban on the testing of cosmetic products and ingredients on animals.

However, there is no worldwide ban, which means that many cosmetics that have been tested on animals are sold in the UK. AVOID THESE SUNSCREENS.

How does Vitamin D benefit us?

Why buy organic?
Organic products are free from alcohol, artificial perfumes, petrochemicals, parabens and all other unnecessary synthetic ingredients. They only use ingredients such as earth minerals, natural herbs, oils and skin vitamins – antioxidants A, C & E which will help to protect your skin against cell damage and support the skin’s immune system. There are a number of websites you can on the high street and even more that are easily found online such as greenpeople.co.uk, drhauschka.co.uk, thenaturalskincarecompany.co.uk, nealsyardremedies.com.

Thought for the day
Don’t put your health at risk it is too important! Start today by asking yourself if your diet has enough Vitamin D and if not, take the appropriate steps to improve it.

We are exposed to enough chemicals in our lives so avoid as many as possible – USE ORGANIC PRODUCTS where necessary and ENJOY a healthier life!!

Article Submitted By
Alma Griffith
Nutrihealing, Surrey

Date Published
12/06/08

 

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