Let it Shine!
In the winter months, the days are shorter, there is less direct sunlight, and we tend to stay indoors more. In the summer we lather up with sun screen and hats to avoid burning. All this leads to less opportunity for your skin to make its own Vitamin D. That is not to say that we should stay out unprotected for hours and risk skin cancer. However, it is worth noting your Vitamin D levels. Vitamin D deficiency has been linked to insulin resistance, osteoporosis, and impaired immune function. While deficiency does not always cause symptoms, some include difficulty thinking clearly, bone pain, frequent bone fractures, muscle weakness, and unexplained fatigue. It is estimated that just 15 minutes of bare skin sun exposure can equate to about 400 IU of Vitamin D. Adults are recommended to get 600 IU each day. Food sources include fatty fish (mackerel, salmon, and tuna), beef, cheese, egg yolks, mushrooms, and fortified foods like milk, orange juice, and breakfast cereals. Including at least one or two of these sources each day in addition to 15 minutes of sun exposure can help you keep your Vitamin D high and your whole body happy.
By Abby Forman, Registered Dietitian with Bon Secours Physical Therapy & Sports Performance
For more information about nutrition and choosing healthy foods, visit us at http://www.bonsecoursphysicaltherapy.com/category/nutrition-weight-loss/