You will agree that sunlight is the synonym for joy of life. Sunlight is related to many important processes that take place in the human body. One of such processes is vitamin D production.
Vitamin D is synthesized in the human body, during direct exposure to sunrays. When we say “direct”, we mean without wearing sunscreen. According to some researches, each of us should spend at least half an hour in the sun, three times a week (that is the minimum). Dark-skinned people should spend even more time in the sun, because dark skin reacts to sunrays differently, and it needs more time to synthesize vitamin D.
Vitamin D is important for several reasons. It affects growth and development, bone quality, and it can prevent various diseases, such as multiple sclerosis, breast cancer, liver problems, etc. Vitamin D deficiency is also linked to diabetes, heart disease, arthritis and some types of cancer. In children, vitamin D deficiency can lead to rickets. In adults, this condition is called osteomalacia.
Most people do not know that vitamin D deficiency is actually very common. Many people lack this important vitamin, but very few of them are actually aware of this. We use sunscreen in order to protect our skin from the sun (because we are afraid of skin cancer and sunburns), but that is not the right thing to do. Sunscreen should be used, but not all the time. You should spend at least half an hour in the sun without any sun block.
According to some opinions, vitamin D deficiency is common because people consume less milk these days. As you know, milk is fortified with vitamin D, and it makes a good source; however, the amounts of vitamin D found in milk cannot be considered sufficient. Vitamin D is normally found in foods like animal meat, eggs, fish and dairy products, but these quantities are not satisfactory. It is certainly beneficial to consume these foods, but this won’t be enough to fulfill your daily needs.
Sunlight is the best source of vitamin D. People who live in the cold climates usually lack vitamin D.
If you have children, make sure to take them out whenever you can. When you see the sun outside, take your kids for a walk or eat your breakfast outside. If the sun is not too strong, you can stay out for as long as you want. If it is extremely hot, you should wait for a while before you take your kids out to play in the sun.
During the winter season, you will have to find other ways to get vitamin D. Various supplements are available, but before you start using any of these products, you must talk to your doctor. Your vitamin D levels must be checked before starting with any supplement. Your doctor will have to measure your vitamin D levels in blood to see if you need supplementation.