Vitamin D & Our Health

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 Photo Credit: Discovery Health

Is a lack of sunlight putting a cloud over your fitness/weight loss goals? Exposure to natural sunlight and UVA rays stimulates Vitamin D production in the body. Vitamin D is responsible for absorbing calcium, which helps send protein to muscles for repair and growth. The lack of natural sunlight exposure, especially during the winter months, can affect the rate at which calcium can transport the necessary protein needed for muscles to recover, grow and produce results. Another disadvantage is that African-Americans are said to absorb less UVA rays due to melanin and darker complexion. According to the CDC, 31% of African-Americans are deficient in vitamin D. Other than spending time outside enjoying the sunshine, taking a vitamin D supplement and/or eating foods rich in vitamin D, such as salmon, tuna and eggs yolks can help ensure that your hard work does not go to waste. 

Vitamin D has many benefits outside of supplying muscles with protein. Check out the list of what vitamin D can do for you:

Vitamin D helps prevent:
• Osteoporosis
• Colon, Prostate, and Breast cancers
• Cardiovascular disease
• Multiple Sclerosis
• Rheumatoid arthritis
• Inflammation
• Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes
• Hypertension

Check with your doctor on how you can make sure that you are getting adequate amounts of vitamin D to reap all of its major benefits.

 

References:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2012). CDC report finds U.S. population has good levels of some essential vitamins and nutrients. http://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2012/p0402_vitamins_nutrients.html

DeNoon, D. J. (2013). The Truth About Vitamin D: Vitamin D Food Sources. http://www.webmd.com/osteoporosis/features/the-truth-about-vitamin-d-vitamin-d-food-sources

Office of Dietary Supplements. (2013). Dietary Supplement Fact Sheet: Vitamin D http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminD-HealthProfessional/

Ilen & Lauren Bell are the husband and wife team behind Black Fitness Today, born, in 2011, out of their motivation to change culture, build a platform and lead the charge. Their purpose is to help change the culture towards health and fitness in the African-American community, showcase those who are making an impact, and promote healthier living. They also aim to serve as a platform for African-American fitness and health professionals and enthusiasts who are otherwise overlooked in traditional fitness media.

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