Soaking Sunlight or Sipping Supplements- Best Ways to Increase Vitamin D3 Levels
Vitamin D3, a fat-soluble vitamin, is primarily responsible for calcium absorption and bone health. It is also required for various immune, digestive, and nervous functions. Considered essential for good health, the recommended daily intake of Vitamin D3 ranges from 600 to 2,000 IU. This can be obtained from food or supplements. However, it is still unclear how much vitamin D3 needs to be taken to lower the risk of illnesses such as cancer and heart disease.
In recent years, there has been a lot of interest in optimizing vitamin D3 status through supplementation because optimal levels are associated with a lower risk of many chronic diseases:
- Heart disease
- Cancer prevention
- Osteoporosis prevention
- Alzheimer’s disease prevention
- Nutrient deficiency prevention (Calcium and Phosphate)
- Bone, teeth, and muscle weakness
Best Practices to increase Vitamin D3 Levels:
The good news is that you can boost your vitamin D3 levels naturally. There are two major ways to ace the task; i) Food Options and ii) Changes in lifestyle.
Here are our top picks for the best foods to eat to get more vitamin D:
- Fortified Milk:
One cup of fortified milk provides almost 100% of your daily value, considered optimal intake. Milk is one of the most common sources of vitamin D in the U.S., with a recommended daily amount of 400 IU per day for adults aged 19 and older.
One egg contains about 5-6% of your daily value, which is also considered adequate intake for adults aged 19 or older. Eggs are also an excellent source of protein and healthy fats, which will help you feel fuller all day long. Especially Egg yolks can be an excellent source and an alternative for Vitamin D tablets. A few factors contribute to the richness of Vitamin D levels in Egg yolk.
- Sun Exposure for the chicken
- Vitamin D content for the chicken feed
- Exposing liquid yolk to UV rays
Fish are a great source of vitamin D3 — especially fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, sardines and tuna since these fish tend to have higher levels (up to 3 times more) than other types of fish. A 3 oz serving of fatty fish contains about 1/4th of your DV (50 IU), which is enough to meet most people’s needs based on their activity level and body weight. However, some individuals may need more due to darker skin pigmentation or other health concerns.
Mushrooms are one of the few sufficient plant-based and fortified sources of vitamin D3. Like egg yolks; they can also synthesize Vitamin D if exposed to sunlight.
- Orange Juice:
Orange juice can be a good source of Vitamin D if you are lactose intolerant. For this reason, some beverage companies started making packaged orange juice with Vitamin D3 and other nutrients, like calcium. So start your day with a glass of juice (230-250ml) because it fulfils 12% of your Vitamin D intake. However, orange juice can worsen the situation for people prone to acid reflux or suffering from diabetes.
- Cereal and oatmeal:
Most of the food options for Vitamin D contain breakfast options. That is why most dieticians recommend a healthy and filling breakfast because it gives energy for you to be active for the entire day. Oats and cereals are also good sources of Vitamin D. A cup of rice cereal contains 11% of Daily Value, whereas a cup of wheat flakes contains 18% of Daily Value.
Lifestyle changes to increase Vitamin D Levels:
1) Soaking sunlight:
The most efficient way to increase your vitamin D levels is to soak up the sun's rays with your skin. The best time to do this is in the middle of the day when the sun is high in the sky. However, if you don't have access to the sun, a safe alternative is using a couple of minutes of direct sunlight on your face every morning or evening for 30 seconds each time -- or even just one minute if you can spare it.
2) Applying homemade sunscreen:
You can make your homemade sun cream by mixing 1 cup of olive oil, 2 teaspoons of coconut oil and 4 teaspoons of beeswax. Apply this mixture to your skin for 15 minutes before you go into the sun. It will help prevent sunburn and make it easier for your skin to absorb the vitamin D from the sun's rays.
3) Having regular supplements:
Take a vitamin D supplement if you cannot soak up enough sunlight or don't want to risk burning yourself. The supplement you choose will depend on how much time and money you have available for purchasing them. Still, many options on the market provide all-natural ingredients free from fillers and other harmful additives, just like Healthvit's Vitamin D3 tablets. These vitamin D3 tablets also contain magnesium; it supports your nervous and muscle function and reduces the risk of osteoporosis. Be sure to check with your doctor before taking any supplements so they know what you're planning on using them for and whether they suit you.