What is Vitamin D?
Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin, which the body is able to get through the diet,
supplements and from exposure to sunlight. The body can synthesize it with the help of
sunlight from a precursor that the body makes from cholesterol. Fortified milk and dairy
products and certain types of fish (such as salmon, tuna and mackerel) are among the best
sources of vitamin D. Small amounts are also found in beef liver, cheese, egg yolks and
mushrooms. Emerging research suggests that adequate daily vitamin D intake may play a
role in supporting breast and colon health as well as immune system regulation.
Vitamin D is necessary for proper bone growth. Vitamin D is essential for
calcium absorption and for regulating serum calcium and phosphorus levels
in the body. As a result, vitamin D promotes healthy bones and teeth. Because
calcium absorption depends on vitamin D, those with a vitamin D deficiency are
at risk for calcium deficiency.
We all know fortified milk is a great source of vitamin D, but did you
know you need to drink 8 glasses to get the 1000 IU a day that experts
The Sunshine Vitamin
• Those living in higher latitudes, with less sun exposure, are at higher
risk for vitamin D deficiency.
• D3, cholecalciferol, the animal form of vitamin D, is the closest form to
what our bodies naturally produce with exposure to the sun.
• Though the sun is an extremely important source of vitamin D, plants
also contain D2, ergocalciferol.