Why Vitamin D Is More Important than You Think
The wonder vitamin of the decade can even help ward off dementia!
It’s good for your bones, but vitamin D is a player in optimizing wellness on many fronts.
Here are some of the foundational health benefits that D delivers:
- Reduced risk of type 2 diabetes – studies have shown low vitamin D levels can negatively impact insulin secretion and decrease glucose tolerance.
- Support for a healthy pregnancy – pregnant women with healthy levels of D seem to be less likely to develop preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, and bacterial vaginosis.
- Decreased disease risk – studies appear to indicate higher levels of cardiovascular disease, hypertension, rheumatoid arthritis, and severity of asthma in those who do not have insufficient D levels.
Thinking about brain health
Now we’re learning that vitamin D may be even more important that previously realized. Its impact on cognition, especially in aging populations is being studied more closely. The recommendations for how much we need may need to be revised for older populations. This is partly because our skin changes as we age and our ability to create D from sunshine is reduced.
When it comes to brain health, it appears that D plays a critical role. Various recent studies focused on brain health, cognition, and memory decline. In one study those with very low levels of D were significantly more likely to develop Alzheimer’s. Another showed a decrease of neuropsychological function in those with low D. A third study revealed a correlation between visual memory decline and severe deficiency of D. All of these show just how important it is to be aware of what our levels of vitamin D are and where we are getting it from.
Getting enough vitamin D
Sometimes referred to as the sunshine vitamin, vitamin D is manufactured by the body after exposure to sunlight. However, many of us do not spend as much time outdoors as we should. And when we are outdoors often we’re covered in sunscreen, hats and protective clothing which blocks vitamin D’s conversion process.
The best food-based source of vitamin D is cold-water fatty fish such as salmon, tuna, or sardines. Other food sources include egg yolks, specially grown mushrooms, and fortified foods such as milk, cereal and orange juice. But, given the levels of vitamin D deficiency that most people experience, food alone is often not enough. Taking vitamin D supplementation such as D-1000 can be beneficial to support the body and ensure sufficient levels.
When taking a vitamin D supplement, it’s important to ensure that you are getting D3, which is the more biologically active form. It’s also a good idea to test your levels on a regular basis and modify how much you are taking based on blood levels.
Some individuals with autoimmune diseases find that stealth organisms wreak havoc on D receptor sites regardless of how much is taken for supplementation. Sometimes getting rid of the hidden infection sets D levels straight, so monitoring D is definitely advisable!