Vitamin D can be found in a small group of foods that can help give your body this much needed nutrient throughout the year.
These food groups include:
• Oily fish like mackerel, salmon and sardines
• Powdered milk
• Fortified breakfast cereals and fat spreads
Why is Vitamin D so important?
Vitamin D is made under our skin following a reaction to sunlight. It functions more as a hormone rather than a vitamin, helping to regulate the amount of calcium and phosphate in our bodies.
Vitamin D helps keep our skin, teeth and bones healthy and a lack of it can have an effect on the body and lead to things like rickets in children and bone pain in adults as a result of a condition called osteomalacia.
Vitamin D helps our body in a number of ways including:
1. Helping the immune system:
A study from the Telegraph found that vitamin D triggers and arms the immune system. The study which was carried out by scientists from the University of Copenhagen found that vitamin D is crucial in activating our body’s immune defences. Without sufficient intake of the vitamin our bodies may be more prone to illness and serious infections.
2. Healthy bone formation:
Healthy bones are one of the main benefits from high levels of vitamin D in our body. Vitamin D deficiency caused serious bone softening effects as far back as the 1600’s but it wasn’t until the 1930’s that a lack of the vitamin was identified as the main cause for these bone effects. Vitamin D also aids to growth and development of bones and muscles in both adults and children.
3. Healthy heart:
Coronary heart disease (CHD) is the biggest cause of death in the UK and is responsible for almost 74,000 deaths each year. It is higher in men than women and around one in six men die from CHD. Vitamin D can reduce your blood pressure and also reduce the risk of stroke or heart attack. There are calls from some scientists to include vitamin D in more food to help try and prevent certain types of heart disease. This is something we have been working on at Linwoods with a number of our super healthy foods now providing a great source of vitamin D to your body.
4. Healthy skin:
After years of being told that sun is bad for our skin it turns out it can actually be good for it as it is the main source of vitamin D. This doesn’t mean you run out of the house at the first sign of sun without being protected though. It is all about balancing the time you spend and an appropriate amount of exposure to the sun on a daily basis can do wonders for your skin. It is particularly important to try and make the most of the limited sunlight available during the Winter months so even if it is cold, try to get out of the house if you can.
5. Put us in a good mood:
One final benefit to vitamin D is that it helps put us all in a good mood, which is never a bad thing. Seasonal mood disturbances and a change of how we tend to feel from Summer to Winter are often found to have a connection with low levels of serotonin. This is connected to vitamin D so try and get the recommended daily amount into your system to help put a smile on your face all year round.
As your body is exposed to more sun in the Summer and less in the Winter, it is important to try and find ways of supplementing this shortage within your body. One way to do this is by adding our super healthy range of foods to your diet. Our flaxseed with bio cultures and Vitamin D provides 100% of your daily allowance of the sunshine vitamin per 30g, allowing you to maintain a healthy diet with some great benefits.
View our recipes to find out how you can add the power of seeds to your diet.