Why you Need the D… Vitamin D
by Shield Vitamins on Mar 20, 2023
The Role of Vitamin D in the Body
Vitamin D plays an extremely important role in our immune system. People with Vitamin D deficiencies are more likely to contract infections that are often more severe. Most are not aware of Vitamin D’s link to COVID-19. Recent studies have shown that people with Vitamin D deficiency are more likely to contract COVID-19 and more likely to have a negative outcome. So, it’s more important than ever to ensure you’re getting enough of the D in your life.
What is Vitamin D?
Beyond those “Got Milk” commercials in the 90’s advertising healthy bones, Vitamin D is the regulator of our immune system. Studies show that Vitamin D can reduce cancer cell growth, help control infections, and reduce inflammation. The referee, as I like to say, Vitamin D controls inflammation. So when you don’t have enough Vitamin D to referee your immune system, COVID-19 can cause an overreaction of inflammation. Then it’s often downhill from there. Strong bones are essential too, but it’s critical to focus on adequate Vitamin D for immune health in this pandemic world.
Where Do You Get it From?
A whopping 90% of Vitamin D comes directly from sunlight. It makes you wonder if you’re getting enough sun, huh, especially after being quarantined for these last few years. Only 10% of Vitamin D comes from the things we consume, including dairy products and fatty fishes like:
- Cod liver oil
- Tuna fish
- Orange juice fortified with Vitamin D
- Dairy and plant milk fortified with Vitamin D
- Beef liver
- Egg yolk
- Fortified cereals
- Certain Mushrooms
The Numbers Don’t Lie
Vitamin D deficiency is widespread in the United States. Overall, most Americans are Vitamin D deficient. Just to highlight a few:
- 64% of older Americans are Vitamin D deficient.
- 82% of people of color are Vitamin D deficient.
- A large percentage of obese people are vitamin D deficient.
Do I need Vitamin D?
To start, did you notice the correlation from the numbers above? Vitamin D absorption is less efficient in people of color and with older skin. For example, people with fair skin can spend 10 minutes in the sun during the summer and get enough of their daily D. In contrast, a darker-skinned person would need 20 minutes to efficiently soak up the same amount of Vitamin D. Because of this, it's essential to find out if you are potentially deficient and do what you can to remedy the issue. For most people, the best way to get enough Vitamin D is to take a supplement because it is hard to get enough from your food.
Right now, it's more important than ever to ensure your Vitamin D levels are efficient enough to fight off COVID-19, among other inflammation problems and infections. Make sure you are getting enough sun. It's an essential vitamin and great for your mental health. But it never hurts to talk to your physician about Vitamin D supplementation. Keep yourself and the people around you safe, healthy, and happy.
So make sure you go out and get more D! Vitamin D. What else would I be talking about?