Vitamin D is a fat-soluble mineral that exists in two forms in the diet. They include vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol) and D3 (cholecalciferol). Cholecalciferol is the most dominant form, and it is capable of raising this minerals levels in blood twice as much as ergocalciferol. It can be made in large amounts when the skin is exposed to U-rays from sunlight. The excess minerals in the human body is stored in fat for future utilization. Vitamins plays various roles in the body such as maintaining bone health, protection of the body against cancer and boosting the function of the immune system among others.
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Sources of Vitamin D
Very few foods contain the vitamin making its intake very slow, however it is required by the body for the absorption of calcium, bone development, immune functioning, and alleviation of inflammation. Foods that are rich in the “almighty D” include fatty fish like salmon and fish liver oils. It is also present in egg yolks though in small quantities. Fortified foods and supplements are also safe and efficient sources of the mineral, which is why a lot of people result in taking pill form supplements to aid with their daily intake.
Vitamin D can be sourced from various foods, sun exposure, and supplements. Yes you can try to intake some D by ingesting the right food, however as I have just mentioned this isn’t always an easy task. The other thing you can do is go outside and get some sun and as a last resort take it in the form of a supplement or pill. Here is a list of some foods that contain the special mineral:
- Fatty Fish such as salmon and tuna
- Dairy products such as milk and cheese
- Orange Juice
How Much Should Be Taken Per Day?
The amount of vitamin D to be taken every day depends on various factors such as age, health status, race, and sun exposure among others. The US Institute of Medicine recommends an average daily intake that ranges between 400 and 800 International Units or 10 to 20 micrograms. However, studies suggest a higher amount for individuals that are not exposed to sunlight.
Vitamin D deficient patients up to one year of age should take 200 International Units per day of vitamin D2 or D3 for six weeks. An alternative to this dosing is administering 50,000 International Units of vitamin D2 or D3 once weekly for six weeks. A maintenance treatment dose of 400 International Units is recommended when serum 25(OH) D levels exceed 30 ng/ml.
These patients whose age range between 1 and 18 years should be given 2,000 International Units per day of vitamin D2 or D3 for at least six weeks. An alternative involves providing 50,000 International Units of vitamin D2 once weekly for at least six weeks. A maintenance treatment of 600 to 1000 International Units should be given to patients whose serum 25(OH) D levels exceeds 30 ng/ml.
Deficient adults should be provided with 50,000 international units of D2 or D3 once weekly for eight days or 6,000 International Units of D2 or D3 per day for eight weeks. Administer between 600 and 1000 International Units when the serum levels of 25(OH) D exceed 30 ng/ml.
And lastly deficient individuals who are obese or have a malabsorption problem should be given at least 6000 to 10,000 International Units of vitamin D on a daily basis. They should be put on a maintenance dose of 3000 to 6000 International Units per day when their serum 25(OH) D serum levels exceed 30 ng/ml.
Recommended Dietary Intake of Vitamin D For Patients at Risk of Deficiency
- Children up to one year and infants should take at least 400 International Unit per day to help in their bone growth.
- Adolescents and children between one year and 18 years should take at least 600 International Units per day to maximize their bone growth.
- Adults between 19 and 50 years should have a dietary intake of 600 International Units to maximize both bone growth and muscle function.
The Benefits Of V-D that you Didn’t Know About
Vitamin D has several important functions, and some that you probably didn’t even know about. Receiving a healthy amount is critical for a stable growth and development of bones and teeth as well as enhanced resistance against specific health problems.
But did you know that D fights depression also? Many scientific research has proved that it might play a critical role in normalizing mood and warding off depression. In one of the recent studies, experts discovered that people who are dealing with depression and have received the magic D supplements noticed improvement in their symptoms.
The Big D also boosts weight loss. In a study, people receiving a healthy daily calcium amount and V-D supplement were able to lose more fat than subjects taking other supplements. The experts said that the extra calcium had an appetite decreasing effect to people.
Are you getting all the Supplement That You Need?
Everyone’s dietary needs are different based on a number of factors including lifestyle, diet, medications and more. The best and most accurate way to find out if you are overdosing on any single supplement, the best thing to do is see your doctor. There you are in safe hands, and your doctor can identify if you have a good balanced amount of supplement intake or if you are over doing it in certain areas.