Thanks to Covid, there’s a lot of talk recently about the importance of vitamin D. Studies are ongoing, but there might be a link between Covid 19 and a vitamin d deficiency. One study found that 80% of Covid patients were vitamin D deficient.
It is also estimated that 41% of Americans are deficient in vitamin D, with 82% of African Americans and 69% of Hispanics being deficient. See the study HERE.
Vitamin D Deficiency Dangers
How dangerous is a vitamin D deficiency? The following health issues have been linked to a lack of vitamin D:
- Lung cancer
- Weak bones/fractures
- Decreased immunity
How many people are taking medication for any of the above, not realizing the actual cause is a vitamin D deficiency? In other words, unless a person raises their vitamin d levels, they might continue to have these health issues no matter much how much medicine they take.
In addition to the potential link between vitamin D and covid, it’s also important to note a weak immune system can increase your risk of colds and the flu. This shows the importance of vitamin D in our lives.
In an attempt to get their recommended amounts of vitamin D, many people are taking supplements. While it’s important to get vitamin D any way you can, is getting vitamin D from direct sunlight the better option?
I think it is.
The Act of Getting Vitamin D
Taking a pill is the simplest and easiest way to get vitamin D, but there are other benefits to getting vitamin D the old-fashioned way, which is from the sun. For example:
Getting vitamin D from the sun requires you to go outside. (Sitting by a window won’t work because the glass blocks the uv rays). There are many benefits to going outside:
- You get fresh air. Indoor air can be up to 60X more polluted than outdoor air.
- Exercise. Walking outside in the sunlight is a great low impact exercise that also burns calories.
- Stretches the muscles. Most people sit at a desk for hours at a time. Going outside stretches the muscles in the back and hamstrings, and brings the body back into its proper alignment. It also reduces the constriction of internal organs caused by excess sitting.
- Mental break. Going outside forces you to take a break. This short break from work can be rejuvenating and a potential stress reliever as well.
Thanks to Covid, many people are home due to stay-at-home restrictions. Making an effort to get outside is more important than ever. Each of these are “hidden” benefits of simply going outside and getting sun. More importantly, they can’t be obtained by taking a pill. For example, getting fresh air is great for the lungs. No pill can replace that.
Please note: If a person is vitamin D deficient, getting this nutrient by any means necessary is critical. My personal opinion is getting vitamin D from the sun is the best source, but taking a supplement is often necessary, especially if under doctor’s orders or during the winter months when getting outside is difficult. In addition, the sun’s rays aren’t as strong during this time, so taking a supplement may be the best choice. Another option is to take supplements and venture outside for the other benefits as described above.
Top Vitamin D Sources
Looking for a vitamin D supplement? Click the picture below to see the top supplements available on Amazon:
In addition to supplements, the following foods contain vitamin D:
- Egg yolk
- Swiss cheese
- Fortified cereals
- Canned tuna
- Cod liver oil
Many times, we take medication to relieve our symptoms, never getting to the source of our ailments. Many of us are vitamin D deficient but don’t realize it. Make an effort to get vitamin D daily. Your body will thank you.
A strong mind and body are essential for good health. Get more tips in my books The 3 Pillars of Strength: Increasing Your Physical, Mental and Spiritual Fitness, and The Diet of Success: Healthy Eating Tips for Hard Working Professionals. Available on Amazon.