Hi, well what a year it has been. Work has pushed my boundaries further than ever imagined, the kids school and social demands continue unabated and we are now heading to another episode of over indulgence!
Looking back, we have had a disappointing amount of summer sunshine, not good for Vitamin D stores or for the fun picnics we so love.
We did have a fab trip which was a special treat and it certainly made up for our poor weather; a royal Caribbean cruise! Wow, as a Dietitian it was a sight to behold. The food choices were superb from both ends of the spectrum! The holiday guests, some whom had definitely been there before, could eat 24/7 and some did. Initially I found it all a little overwhelming and off-putting, but once I realised that the majority were not all gluttons we had a holiday of a lifetime!
As we come into the winter it is important to be aware that nearly half of the British population have low blood levels of Vitamin D during the winter and spring months. This has come from changes in our lifestyles, less time outdoors, and increased use of sunscreens.
If you are Obese, pregnant or a child you are at further risk due to either lack of availability with high fat stores or due to an increased need for development and growth.
Rickets, a bone disease from the Victorian times, that had diminished, is now increasing significantly, leading to bow legs and short height, if prolonged it results in adults as osteomalacia.
Recent Scientific literature has linked this important vitamin to not alone bone health; rickets, oesteoporosis (brittle bones) but also low levels of vitamin D are linked to increased risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, breast and colon cancer, impaired immunity, type I diabetes, arthritis and multiple sclerosis.
What Can You Do?
Careful exposure to the sun in the summer months (pale skin achieves sufficient amounts 10 times faster than darker skin) is considered essential but maybe not enough.
- Salmon- wild and baked is an excellent source. Baking has no effect on Vitamin D content whereas frying reduces it by 50%!
- Sun dried Shitake mushrooms is also highly concentrated, sardines canned, mackerel and tuna canned.
Some breakfast cereals are higher than others so check the labels. Some manufacturers are aware of this deficiency worry and products like breads are being fortified, polyunsaturated margarine are also fortified.
Until further fortification is widespread supplements maybe necessary.
Make sure you are getting enough from your diet and sunshine and then top up over the winter months.
Information checked & correct on 16th May 2018.
Links included in this description might be Amazon affiliate links. If you purchase a product or service with the links that I provide I may receive a small commission.