Winter and the importance of Vitamin D

31 May, 2017

With the days getting shorter and the need to dress more warmly as the temperature drops, many of us won’t be getting as much Vitamin D from the sun.

Vitamin D is essential for strong bones, proper muscle function and optimal immune functioning. Low Vitamin D may have a connection with Seasonal Affective Disorder, where people experience low mood during the winter months.

We, as humans are able to make Vitamin D when we are exposed to Ultraviolet Radiation (UV) from the sun.  Many of us don’t get enough sun exposure, even in summer. People who may not be getting enough sun include:

People who avoid sun exposure

People with very dark skin

Office/shift workers

People with certain medical conditions that effect Vitamin D metabolism

Breastfed infants whose mothers are low in Vitamin D

Optimal sun exposure for most adults during winter is 10 -15 minutes of early to mid morning sun on the shoulders, arms and hands. It is important to practice safe sun exposure to avoid the risk of skin cancer.

The information provided in this article is for educational and informational purposes only; it is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice or care. Please seek the advice of a qualified health care professional in the event something you have read here raises questions or concerns regarding your health.

 

Written by Karina Paskin 

Nutritionist - Mosman