Health Strategy #4 – Better Get Your “D”!
Humans get Vitamin D from exposure to sunlight, diet and supplements, and UV light sources… such as certain full-spectrum florescent bulbs.
The closer humans live to the equator, the less often Vitamin D deficiencies occur. The reverse is also true.
3 Reasons Why Vitamin D Is Critical
#1 – Vitamin D Is A Mood Stabilizer…
And because Vitamin D is a mood enhancer/stabilizer… winters at the higher latitudes produce a much higher incidence of suicide than in those closer to the equator.
Melatonin, the “hibernation hormone”, increases with decreased light, which explains that tired feeling that comes on when it begins to get dark outside — even if it is only 4 o’clock in the afternoon. And it also explains why decreased melatonin is found in those with insomnia.
Conversely, serotonin, the brain hormone associated with mood elevation, rises with exposure to bright light, and falls with decreased sun exposure. This has been proven by many scientific studies, including one reported in the well-respected medical journal Lancet in 2002. This study measured blood levels of serotonin, finding that production of serotonin by the brain was directly related to the duration of bright sunlight.
#2 – Without D, The Skeleton Turns To Mush
This caged iguana is severly Vitamin D deficient… to the point that its’ skeleton will not support itself.
Without Vitamin D, only about 10-15% of dietary calcium is absorbed by the body. And calcium absorption into the body is directly related to bone mineral density… which connects the deficiency to osteoporosis and fractures, as well as muscle strength and falls in adults.
#3 – Vitamin D – An “Activator” For The Immune System
Recent research carried out at the University of Copenhagen has revealed that Vitamin D activates the immune system by “arming” T cells to fight off infections.
This new research, led by Professor Carsten Geisler from the Department of International Health, Immunology and Microbiology at the University of Copenhagen, found that without sufficient Vitamin D, the immune system’s T cells remain dormant, offering little or no protection against invading microorganisms and viruses.
But with Vitamin D in the bloodstream, T cells become “armed” and begin seeking out invaders that are then destroyed and carried out of the body.
Vitamin D, in other words, acts a bit like the ignition key to your car: The car won’t run unless you turn the key and ignite the engine. Likewise, your immune system won’t function unless it is biochemically activated with Vitamin D.
If you’re facing the winter flu season in a state of deficiency, your immune system is essentially defenseless against seasonal flu. That’s why the majority of people who get sick are the ones who live indoors, work indoors…and therefore, exist in a chronic state of Vitamin D deficiency.
Getting enough Vitamin D into your system is easy to do…
Best – In the summer… being in direct sunlight 15 minutes at a time, 2 times a week, is enough to provide you with adequate Vitamin D.
Good – Cod liver oil is the best dietary source of Vitamin D. ( Fish oil is a great source of omega 3, but does NOT contain high levels of Vitamin D. )
Last Resort – If You can’t get enough sunlight, but you can’t stand cod liver oil either, the next best option is full spectrum light from fluorescent bulbs…. such the those recommended by DR Mercola. ( Mercola.com )
Next Article – Get Movin!