Are You Vitamin D Deficient?

Well it looks like winter is hitting us in the GTA early this year…it’s only mid-November!  Snow yesterday and today.  A high of -3 degrees Celsius today with a windchill close to -10.  Ugh.

At least it’s sunny outside today which give us a bit of an opportunity to catch some UV rays and trigger Vitamin D synthesis in our bodies, right?

Actually, unless you are willing to wear your swim suit and bask in the sun for about 20 minutes today, you won’t be producing enough to meet the daily requirement of 400-1000 IUs.  I did mention it feels like -10 degrees C didn’t I?  And even if it were a nice, hot summer day, the risk of skin cancer may outweigh the benefits.

The reality is that Vitamin D is a prohormone that’s very important for our health in a variety of ways but it is also very difficult to get enough through our diet unless you regularly choose fatty fish and fish liver oils primarily.  Some fortified dairy and cereals provide just a modest amount of Vitamin D.

Amount of vitamin D in sample food sources:

  • 1 Tbsp cod liver oil: 1,360 IU
  • 2.5 oz. Atlantic salmon: 375 IU
  • 1 cup of fortified milk:100 IU
  • 1 cup of fortified orange juice: 100 IU
  • 1 cup of fortified cereal: 150 IU

As a result 67% of Canadians are Vitamin D deficient to prevent chronic diseases.  How can you be sure for yourself?…Take a blood test.

Unfortunately, it’s no longer covered by OHIP unless you have osteoporosis/osteopenia, rickets, malabsorption syndromes, renal disease, or on medications that affect Vitamin D absorption.  In other words, our ‘health care’ system is not concerned about prevention.  However, you can have a D-Spot test here at Meridian Wellness.  The cost is $95 but is covered as a naturopathic visit through your extended health plan.

What’s the big deal with Vitamin D and in particular Vitamin D3 to be exact?

Vitamin D is somewhat of a ‘star’ nutrient these days because research links it to numerous health benefits. Studies suggest Vitamin D may go beyond its well-established role in bone health.  It is now linked to improving your immune system especially for flu and cold season while also reducing the risk of cancer, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, autoimmune diseases, anxiety, and more.

With the winter months upon us, it’s imperative that we ensure that we are getting enough Vitamin D through our diet and additional supplementation.

Contact us to schedule an appointment with Dr. Misa to perform a D-Spot test and get a gauge at where you are at with your Vitamin D levels.

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