How much Vitamin D should I take?
Vitamin D is only found in a small number of foods making it difficult for your body to maintain adequate levels through diet alone. A lot of people living in the UK are deficient in this vitamin, which is why supplementing our levels is so important.
10mcgs (400IU) daily is usually sufficient for supplementation, but the amount of vitamin D each individual requires can vary depending on other factors.
When should I take Vitamin D?
The time of year most important to take a Vitamin D supplement is from October to March, during the autumn and winter months. During these months the sun is not strong enough for the body to make adequate levels of vitamin D, and ensuring supply through diet alone may not be enough.
However, those at increased risk of deficiency may consider taking a supplement throughout the year. If you have darker skin (African, African-Caribbean, South Asian origin) you are more at risk of vitamin D deficiency. If you are frail or housebound you are also more likely to be deficient.
Which foods are particular good sources of Vitamin D?
Oily fish are good sources (salmon, sardines, herring, mackerel). Red meat and liver are good sources, as are egg yolks. Fortified foods such as breakfast cereals, and mushrooms as a plant based option also provide vitamin D through diet.
How is Vitamin D made?
The sun plays a vital role in the production of Vitamin D. When the skin is exposed to the sun, through a chain of reactions, vitamin D is manufactured. This can be sufficient in the summer months, but is why it is recommended in the UK that everyone considers a supplement during the autumn and winter.
Why do I need Vitamin D?
Vitamin D plays a vital role in the body for all round health and wellness. We need vitamin D for calcium absorption, immune function, muscle function, protecting bones and teeth, and heart health.
Does Vitamin D help with Menopause?
Not only has vitamin D been shown to have a positive effect on low mood which can be exacerbated during peri-menopause, several studies suggest that adequate levels of vitamin D may help to reduce menopausal symptoms such as hot flushes, night sweats, sleep disturbance and poor concentration.
How do I know if I am deficient?
Book in for a very quick and easy test! The results will provide you with an indication of your vitamin D levels. Following on from this, treatment recommendations will be offered.