Vitamin D, also known as 'sunshine vitamin', is one of the most important nutrients, which is known to have potent effects on our body. For a country like India, where there is abundant of sunlight available, it comes as a shocker to see that majority of the population is diagnosed with vitamin D deficiency. According to a latest study, about 70 percent of Indian population is vitamin D deficient. With an aim to educate people about the importance of having a nutritious diet and adding all essential nutrients, including vitamin D, India is celebrating 'National Nutrition Month' (Poshan Maah), which commenced on 1st September 2019.
Vitamin D plays a pivotal role in regulation and absorption of essential minerals like calcium, magnesium and phosphate in human body. Furthermore, sunshine vitamin helps boosting immune system and eases the growth and development of bones and teeth. As per health experts, vitamin D also helps improve resistance against various lifestyle diseases, including Type 2 diabetes. Since vitamin D deficiency is a common problem in India, this article will talk about ways to naturally increase vitamin D levels in your body though your daily diet.
Also Read: How Much Vitamin D Is Too Much Vitamin D?
5 Diet Tips To Increase Your Vitamin D Levels | Diet Tips To Avoid Vitamin D Deficiency
1. Eat Fatty Fish And Seafood
Adding seafood and fatty fish to your diet may help you increase vitamin D levels in your body. As per health experts and nutritionists, fatty fish and seafood are rich natural food sources of vitamin D. Hundred grams serving of salmon has about 441 IU of vitamin D, as per the USDA nutrition data. Other kinds of fish and seafood rich in vitamin D that you may have are: tuna, mackerel, oysters, shrimp and sardines. Fatty fish and seafood are some of the best sources of vitamin D; however, vitamin D content may vary on the type and source of seafood you consume.
2. Have More Mushrooms
Mushrooms are the one of the plant-based sources of vitamin D that one may include in their diet. Just like humans, mushrooms get their vitamin D from sunlight (UV light). While vitamin D content may vary on the type of mushroom you consume such as wild maitake mushrooms have 1123 IU per 100-gram serving, while Chanterelle mushrooms have 212 IU per 100-gram serving - as per the USDA nutrition data. It is because of the sunlight, wild mushrooms typically have more vitamin D levels than commercially grown types. Nevertheless, you can always buy mushrooms that are treated with UV light. Make sure you buy mushrooms from a trusted supplier like from farmers market to avoid exposure to poisonous varieties.
3. Add Egg Yolk To Your Daily Diet
Like many other natural food sources, egg yolk is also a great source of vitamin D that we can easily add to our daily diet. Egg yolk of a large egg (17 grams) has approximately 37 IU of vitamin D, while 100-gram serving of egg yolk has about 218 IU of vitamin D. But since various studies have claimed that dietary cholesterol from eggs tends to increase both LDL and HDL cholesterols, make sure you consult your doctor before you add egg yolk to your diet.
4. Have Fortified Foods
There are a few natural foods that contain high levels of vitamin D that are added to staple foods in a process called fortification. Some commonly fortified foods are: cow milk, soy milk, almond milk, hemp milk, orange juice, yogurt and tofu. If you are not sure about whether a particular food has been fortified with vitamin D, check with your nutritionist.
5. Vitamin D Supplements
Adding natural sources of vitamin D like above mentioned foods is a must, but pairing them with vitamin D supplements may help support your diet to increase the level of the vitamin D in our body. According to a study by Hebrew Senior Life's Institute for Aging Research, a Harvard affiliated medical care for elderly in the US, it was found that people who take vitamin D supplements with vitamin D-rich dairy foods like milk, yogurt and cheese have higher bone mineral density in their spine, which reduces the risk of bone loss in the hip.
Vitamin D is an essential nutrient that a lot of people don't get enough of. You can increase your vitamin D levels by getting enough sun exposure, consuming natural foods rich in vitamin D and/or taking supplements. Consult your nutritionist and health experts before you add any food or supplement to your diet.
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.
About Shubham BhatnagarYou can often find Shubham at a small authentic Chinese or Italian restaurant sampling exotic foods and sipping a glass of wine, but he will wolf down a plate of piping hot samosas with equal gusto. However, his love for homemade food trumps all.