- During the winter season, sunlight exposure reduces
- Salmon and egg yolks are good sources of vitamin D
- Vitamin D helps in absorption of calcium from the diet consumed
Vitamin D is one of the most important nutrients that the human body needs in optimum levels. It ensures healthy functioning of the human body by assisting in multiple body functions. Vitamin D is also known as the free vitamin as your body produces vitamin D when exposed to sunlight. But during the winter season, less exposure to sunlight as the weather is cloudy most of the times. Many also avoid going due to low temperature. Many also miss adding enough vitamin D food sources. But do you need extra vitamin D during the winter season? What are the best vitamin D sources you should add to your diet? What is the significance of vitamin D in winters? We have got all these questions covered for you. Keep reading to ensure optimum intake of vitamin D during the winter season.
Vitamin D requirement in winter season: Know the importance
Dr. Leena Saju, Dietician at Artemis Hospitals explains, "The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the need for boosting immunity. Vitamin D is an essential nutrient for building immunity and strengthening bones, muscles and teeth. A lack of vitamin D can lead to a loss in bone density thereby placing people at a higher risk of bone disorders such as osteoporosis, rickets and fractures."
Do you need extra vitamin D in winters?
"In the winter, humans are exposed to more infections and spend less time outside. This leads to inadequate exposure to sunlight. This may contribute to inadequate levels of vitamin D. Therefore, to cover that you need to add foods loaded with vitamin D to your diet," answers Dr. Saju.
Also read: All About Vitamin D You need To Know
Daily requirement and food sources
Dr. Saju says"Indian Council of Medical Research recommendation (2020) for vitamin D is 400 IU/day for adults and children above age one."
Milk and milk products, fish and fortified cereals are good sources of Vitamin D. One may consider taken a supplement but only after consultation with a doctor as excess Vitamin D can damage kidneys.
Though COVID-19 has restricted mobility, sitting for a few minutes in the sun, preferably between 11 am and 1 pm in the balcony and patio will help you gain adequate Vitamin D. The amount of exposure should be for at least 18% of the body (bare arms and bare face). Dr. Saju tells, "The duration of exposure varies for each individual depending on the complexion. Ideally, fair-complexioned people should sit for at least 20 minutes in the sun 3-4 times a week while dark-skinned people require 30-40 minutes in the sun."
(Dr. Leena Saju, Dietician at Artemis Hospitals)
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