We all know about getting our five a day, and most of us are fairly clued up about nutrition. We’re always looking for ways to boost our nutrition, and some of us have even incorporated trendy superfoods like quinoa and acai into our diets. But while we try our very best to be healthy, it’s hard to cover all the bases – especially when it comes to our vitamin D intake. How do we know if we’re eating the right foods with vitamin D in? And how much of those foods should we be consuming?
“Vitamin D is one of the most important vitamins. Our skin naturally synthesises vitamin D from natural sun-light and it can also be obtained from certain food groups. However it can often be hard to get enough or impractical through diet alone,” says nutritionist and SuperFoodist Rick Hay. “And because vitamin D is important for a healthy immune system, as well as bone and muscle maintenance, a lack of vitamin D can lead to more serious issues later on like fatigue, and even bone & muscle weakness.”
A closer look at vitamin D
According to a recent report, one fifth of adults in England are estimated to have low levels of vitamin D, which can result in bone density issues. As we age, we’re more at risk of lower levels of vitamin D, because our ability to absorb and synthesise this essential vitamin gradually decreases. This, combined with the lack of sunlight during winter months, can result in issues like brittle bones and bone and muscle pain if not addressed in time.
“The benefits of vitamin D become even more important in our later years, as we tend to lose bone density and muscle tone,” says Hay. “It is also known to help mood as it’s a fat soluble vitamin that helps support healthy serotonin production and levels – which is especially helpful during the winter months.”
See also: Supplement Your Life
Simple ways to get your recommended daily vitamin D
Public Health England recently announced that a daily dose of 10µg of vitamin D is recommended for all ages. But many of us are unsure how much is actually enough – how many eggs or fruit do we need to consume in order to get the right amount of vitamin D?
We sought the advice of nutritionist and SuperFoodist Rick Hay, who showed us a variety of breakfast options that are equivalent to 10ug —to help us start the day right.
- Cereal lover? You’re in luck: You’ll need around 10 bowls of vitamin D fortified cereal with 2-3 glasses of fortified orange juice
- Get fruity: Get your spoon ready for 7 or 8 small yoghurt tubs with 2-3 punnets of berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries)
- Egg-cellent start to the day: Crack into a plain omelette made with 10 or 11 eggs
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As you can see, you could easily spend most of your morning (and over your day’s worth of calories) trying to get the right amount of vitamin D.
“I liken vitamins and mineral supplementation to a health insurance policy, as keeping our levels up provides our body with the nutrients it needs to keep our bodies ticking over” says Hay. “That’s what I love about multivitamins—it’s a quick and easy addition to my daily routine, yet it gives me the nutritional support to help me stay at my best every day.”
Swisse Ultivite multivitamins (available in men’s, women’s and kids’ variants) have been specially formulated to include an optimal daily dose of vitamin D3 and are tailored with other essential vitamins, including a unique range of botanical extracts. To find out more about Swisse Vitamins, visit their website: swisse.co.uk/en-gb
If you have enjoyed reading this article about the benefits of vitamin D, click here to read more on Celebrity Angels on the health advantages of supplements.