Our richest source of vitamin D comes from exposure of bare skin to the UVB rays of the sun.
Small amounts can be found in food, but not enough to maintain healthy levels.
Do not rely on diet alone for vitamin D.
Only 10% of our daily requirements can be had from food.
It is nearly impossible to attain healthy levels from food alone.
Fatty fish like wild salmon (not farmed salmon) and mackerel contain some vitamin D
but you would have to consume huge amounts daily.
There are only 2 reliable sources of vitamin D; The sun and vitamin D3 supplements.
The best is from the sun, as the sun also regulates how much cholecalciferol the body can make.
So there is absolutely no risk of overdosing from sun exposure.
Sunbeds provide vitamin D - something to consider in the winter months.
Vitamin D3 supplements are by far the best way to keep vitamin D levels up all year round,
especially in the winter, but also in the summer months, if you do not go out in the sun.
HOW MUCH DO I NEED TO TAKE?
Absorption levels vary from person to person. Two people taking the same amount in supplements may
have completely different levels.
The only way to be sure of how much you need to take is by getting your vitamin D blood levels tested.
There is no other way to find out what your levels are and whether you are deficient or not.
Most of us are deficient, so there is little need to wait before taking supplements.
It has been recommended by many of the experts that a safe dose to start with is between 2,000 -5,000 iu.
This is a perfectly safe level to start with.
The chart below is from Dr. Mercolas website mercola.com
VITAMIN D DOSE RECOMMENDATIONS
35 units per pound per day
Age 5 - 10
WARNING: There is no way to know if the above recommendations are correct. The ONLY way to know is to test your blood. You might need 4-5 times the amount recommended above. Ideally your blood level of 25 OH D should be 60ng/ml.
After 2-3 months of taking vitamin D3 supplement get a blood test.
This is called a 25 (OH)D or 25 hydroxy vitamin D test.
Your doctor can order one for you, or you can get one from Birmingham hospital for £25.00.