Vitamin D is known as the sunshine vitamin. This is because when our skin is exposed to sunlight it produces Vitamin D for our bodies to use. Minimum blood levels of Vit-D can be achieved by exposure of the legs, arms, face or back without sunblock to direct sunlight for approximately 20 minutes twice weekly. The active force in sunlight that creates Vit-D is actually Ultra Violet B rays aka UVB. Complete cloud cover blocks about 50% of UVB from reaching our skin, so with a longer skin exposure on cloudy days basic levels of Vit-D can still be achieved.
Vit-D is used by the body to help keep bones strong as it helps calcium to be absorbed by the body and allows the bones use calcium and other minerals to maintain their density. Vit-D is also used by the body in maintaining heart health, regulating cholesterol, promoting healthy skin,controlling calcium and even reducing the risk of cancer. As of 2010 the recommended daily intake of Vitamin D is 600 IU’s daily for adults. If vitamin D is being prescribed to treat an illness much higher amounts may be used for a daily dosage.
Vitamin D3 is is most common form of vitamin D and is the preferred choice of all the Doctors in Green Apple Health Care we use liquid form that can be taken orally from a dropper or added to smoothies or juice. Quite often the Doctors here will prescribe much higher dosages then the recommenced daily amount. This is based on the individual patients needs and what they are being treated for.
It is important to note that studies have found that people with Northern climate genetics compared to Equatorial genetics absorb sunlight and produce Vitamin D at a higher rate. That is to say, that someone with Scandinavian genes will produce more Vitamin D given a set amount of Sun exposure when compared with someone with Central American genes.
Where ever your genes come from, we could all use more Sun as Edmontonians.