How to optimize vitamin D supply: The message about the importance of vitamin D has now reached almost everyone. How the vitamin should be taken correctly, however, causes uncertainties again and again. Our tips provide you with all the information you need to optimize your vitamin D supply.
15 Tips For a Healthy Supply of Vitamin D.
Hardly any other vitamin is researched as intensively as vitamin D. New studies on the effects of the sun vitamin on very different organs, diseases and disease risks appear almost every day. Apart from its well-known bone-strengthening effect,
- Vitamin D also reduces the risk of infection,
- protects against flu,
- relieves chronic pain,
- reduces the risk of diabetes, dementia, and cancer,
- lowers cholesterol,
- improves fertility,
- repairs blood vessels and
- is also indispensable for autoimmune diseases.
You will find articles on all of these points and many more in our vitamin D section. Browsing there is worth it! You can find detailed information on the following tips in our article Vitamin D – The right intake.
It is important that all of the effects mentioned are to be expected with a good vitamin D supply. This means that if you already have a healthy vitamin D level, additional intake of vitamin D may not be noticeable.
How To Optimize Vitamin D Supply
The situation is completely different if there is a vitamin D deficiency and this is then remedied. And already we are on the first tip for a healthy supply of vitamin D.
Tip 1: Have your vitamin D level measured
So that you can assess whether you should take vitamin D as a dietary supplement or whether you should enjoy the sun more in summer, you should first have your vitamin D level tested (at your doctor or with tests that are now available online).
Values below 30 ng/ml indicate a deficiency. A good target value is around 40 ng/ml. (If the values on your blood analysis are given in nmol / l, you can divide them by 2.5 and arrive at the ng/ml values.)
Tip 2: Determine your individual Vitamin D Dose
Depending on the result, it will then be decided which dose you need. There are various options for calculating the individually appropriate dose. We present two of these methods in detail. You can find one in our article Vitamin D – The correct intake (link at the top).
Tip 3: This is how healthy sunbathing works
If you are reading this article in the summer, then use the summer months to whip up your vitamin D levels and replenish your vitamin D stores for the winter. Proceed as follows:
- Inquire about the UV index before sunbathing (in summer) so that you can estimate how long you should stay in the sun and whether you need sun protection. The UV index indicates the radiation strength of the sun. You can find out about it online from any weather service.
- Spend the time outside dressed as little as possible, at least your arms and ideally, your legs should be uncovered.
- If you are in full sunshine in the afternoon, do not use sunscreen for at least the first half-hour of your sunbathing. If you haven’t been in the sun for months, slowly get your skin used to the sun. Half an hour can be too much and cause sunburn.
- Remember that not only sunscreens contain UV blockers, but also many day creams and make-up products.
- Sunbathe according to your skin type: light-skinned shorter, dark-skinned longer.
Tip 4: Showering after sunbathing: Yes or No
In some places, it is recommended not to take a shower after sunbathing, as otherwise the vitamin D precursor formed in the skin would be washed off again.
This point has not yet been fully clarified. But one can generally assume that vitamin D can only be formed in living skin cells – and living skin cells cannot be washed off.
Tip 5: Eat foods with Vitamin D.
It is hardly possible to maintain vitamin D levels through diet alone. Most foods provide only a small amount of vitamin D. However, small amounts of vitamin D also help to stabilize the vitamin D level.
In the purely vegetable area, there are avocados (136 IU per 100 g) and mushrooms that contain vitamin D (e.g. porcini mushrooms 124 IU, chanterelles 84 IU).
The mushrooms, however, should have grown outdoors (wild mushrooms), which can almost always be ruled out for cultivated mushrooms (although nutritional tables for mushrooms, for example, indicate a vitamin D value of 76 IU).
However, the latter can be placed in the sun with the slats facing up in summer and then dried for winter. The mushrooms then store a lot of vitamin D and can supply you with the vitamin in the dark months.
If necessary, visit a high-quality tanning salon with solariums that also work with UVB radiation. Every one to two weeks you could have full-body radiation thereto at least prevent the vitamin D level from falling. The duration or dose depends of course on the skin type and needs.
Studies had shown that one visit to the tanning booth a month had no benefit in terms of vitamin D levels, as they fell despite the tanning bed. When sunbathing in the tanning bed every two weeks, the original vitamin D level remained constant and when visiting a week it rose.
A regular visit to the solarium is still associated with an increased risk of skin cancer, so it is safer (also in terms of dosage) to take vitamin D through a dietary supplement, especially in winter and spring.
Tip 7: Take vitamin D as a Dietary Supplement
Vitamin D is available in different forms as a dietary supplement – drops and capsules – and also in different dosages. Drops are particularly easy to dose individually. The vitamin D3 drops of effective nature are contained per drop of 1,000 IU of vitamin D3.
Since food supplements can only be sold in low doses, retailers have to write on higher dosed preparations (e.g. capsules with 10,000 IU each) that you can only take 1 capsule every 14 days.
Tip 8: Take Vitamin D with a little Fat
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin and should therefore always be taken with a little fat. However, very little fat is generally sufficient, e.g. B. the fat in salad dressing or in spreads. You should not only take vitamin D3 capsules in water.
The drops mentioned in tip 6 already contain oil and can be taken without any other ingredient.
Tip 9: Avoid Overdosing
Precisely because vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin, it can easily be stored in adipose tissue and accumulate there. In this way, high doses can lead to an overdose, as vitamin D surpluses cannot – like water-soluble vitamins – be regularly discharged with the urine.
Let z. B. Measure your vitamin D level again after 2 to 3 months after starting your dietary supplement.
We describe symptoms of a vitamin D overdose with further details on this point in our article Vitamin D – The correct intake (see link above).
Tip 10: Take Vitamin D3 with Vitamin K2
Vitamin D3 increases the absorption of calcium into the blood. So that this calcium does not stay in the blood but is transported into the bones, vitamin K2 is generally taken together with vitamin D3, e.g. B. 100 µg of vitamin K2 with up to 2,500 IU of vitamin D per day.
A formula for calculating an individual vitamin K2 dosage and information for people who take blood thinners can be found in the above-linked article Vitamin D – The correct intake.
Tip 11: Vitamin D and Calcium
Since vitamin D promotes calcium absorption from the intestine, calcium should only be taken with vitamin D if the diet is very low in calcium. In which other situations calcium is important in addition to vitamin D, we explain in the above-linked article Vitamin D – The correct intake.
Tip 12: Take vitamin D with Magnesium
Magnesium activates vitamin D. Therefore, 200 to 300 mg of magnesium in the form of a dietary supplement is a good accompaniment to vitamin D.
For a diet rich in magnesium, 200 mg or only sporadic consumption is sufficient.
Tip 13: The Best Time To Take Vitamin D.
There are still no precise data that would show that vitamin D should be taken in the morning or in the evening. Although vitamin D deficiency is a contributory cause of sleep disorders, according to user reports, taking it in the evening or right before bed is not ideal.
Therefore, it is more advisable to take it in the morning or at noon.
With or after a meal, the vitamin is in any case better absorbed than alone on an empty stomach.
Tip 14: vitamin D and medication
Some drugs disrupt vitamin D absorption or the vitamin D metabolism in general and thus contribute to the widespread vitamin D deficiency, e.g. B. cortisone, cholesterol-lowering drugs with active ingredient colestyramine, weight loss pills (e.g. orlistat) and many others.
Statins and so-called thiazide diuretics (for high blood pressure and heart failure) can increase vitamin D levels. When taking medication, therefore, discuss with your doctor or alternative practitioner whether and how you could integrate the intake of vitamin D.
Tip 15: apply Vitamin D to the skin
In the event of intolerance to vitamin D preparations taken orally, vitamin D can also be applied to the skin
Taking vitamin D properly
As mentioned several times, you will find detailed information (including sources) on the tips given here in the article Vitamin D – The correct intake, linked at the very top, or in the other related articles.