Vitamin D and Belly Fat

Vitamin D and Belly Fat

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How Vitamin D3 Works

1. Vitamin D was discovered in 1920 where its importance in our bodies was realized in discovering a way to cure rickets, a painful bone disease in children (2)
2. Vitamin D fortified foods began within a decade, making rickets rare in the US (2)
3. Vitamins are defined as an essential nutrient that your body cannot produce on its own and must acquire from the diet – Vitamin D is not actually a vitamin, but a hormone, which is a chemical that regulates body physiology. (1)
a. Your skin makes vitamin D when exposed to sunlights, so it does not need to acquire it from food if adequate sunlight is available (2)
i. The only natural foods that contain vitamin D are fish and egg yolks (2)

What Does Vitamin D Do?

1. We are discovering more and more ways that the body utilized vitamin D as time goes on
a. Vitamin D receptors, proteins that bind to vitamin D, exists in many of the body’s tissues, including the heart, muscles, endocrine glands, prostate and many others. (2)
2. Bone health – vitamin D is essential for our bodies to be able to absorb calcium. Without enough vitamin D, the body absorbs only 10-15% of dietary calcium, versus 30-40% when our vitamin D levels are normal.

How to Get Enough Vitamin D

Now that we understand how important vitamin D is in our bodies, and how likely it is that we do not have enough, how do we get more?

1. Sunlight – It can be a good idea to first spend a bit of time in the sun before applying sunscreen

a. spend 10-15 minutes three times per week without sunscreen on. This may be enough to prevent deficiencies (5)
2. Fatty fish, such as salmon, tuna and mackerel, and egg yolks (5)

3. Fortified foods: Many foods have been fortified with vitamin D, so look for this at your grocery store. Such foods include some milks, yogurts, orange juices and cereals (2)

4. Mushroom trick: mushrooms are a great source of natural vitamin D

a. Exposing mushrooms to sunlight prior to eating them will ramp up their vitamin D levels! So sit them on your window sill or backyard prior to adding them to your food (6)

5. UV Lamps
a. They are similar to tanning beds, but not identical. They carry the same skin-cancer risk as the sun or tanning beds, so be careful not to overdo it. These are a great option for those who live where there is little access to direct sunlight (8)

6. Supplementation: Last is supplementation. It is best to obtain some sunlight and concentrate on adding additional vitamin D in your diet. That being said, if you believe you are lacking vitamin D you can always buy supplements. Total recommended intake can vary from about 200 IU to 400 IU per day, including what you get from diet and sunlight. (5)

1. What is Vitamin D and How Does it Work
http://www.dummies.com/how-to/content/what-is-vitamin-d-and-how-does-it-work.html
2. Vitamin D and your health: Breaking old rules, raising new hopes
http://www.health.harvard.edu/mens-health/vitamin-d-and-your-health
3. How Vitamin D Can Help Slash Your Risk of 7 Different Acute and Chronic Diseases
http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/01/05/vitamin-d-health-benefits.aspx
4. Six Reasons You Need Vitamin D
http://www.mensfitness.com/nutrition/supplements/six-reasons-you-need-vitamin-d
5. Vitamin D
http://www.mensfitness.com/nutrition/supplements/vitamin-d
6. One Weird Trick Could Help Your Get Enough Vitamin D This Winter

One Weird Trick Could Help You Get Enough Vitamin D This Winter


7. Heart Patients Lacking Vitamin D More Likely to Be Depressed
http://www.health.com/health/article/0,,20411991,00.html
8. 12 WAys to Get Your Daily Vitamin D
http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20504538_13,00.html