Vitamin D Foods
A healthy diet includes a variety of vitamin D foods. Vitamin D is a fat–soluble vitamin stored in the fat of the body. There are only a handful of foods rich in vitamin D and they mainly come from fish. The good news is eating foods rich in vitamin D is not the only way to get that essential daily dose. Exposure to the sun for a few minutes each day will provide a daily dose of vitamin D. However, the use of sun blockers inhibits the body’s ability to absorb vitamin D making it important to know what vitamin D foods to eat regularly. From birth to the age of 50, a person needs 200 IUs (International Units) each day. From the age of 51 to 70 the amount of Vitamin D intake should be doubled to 400 IUs. Past the age of 71, the intake should be increased to 600 IUs of Vitamin D.
- Cod liver oil. Just one tablespoon of cod liver oil contains the highest level of vitamin D at 1,360 IUs. Cod liver oil is a thin, pale yellow oil traditionally made in a wooden barrel from cod livers fermented in seawater. After about a year, the cod liver oil is removed. The modern method of extracting cod liver oil is cooking the cod, then extracting the oil. The health benefits besides a high concentration of vitamin D are treatment for painful arthritic joints, multiple sclerosis, and even certain cancers in some countries. The downside of taking cod liver oil in capsules is the chance of mercury poisoning.
- Salmon. Eating a three ounce serving of cooked Salmon contains 447IUs of vitamin D. Salmon is a healthy oily fish with high levels of protein and omega-3 fatty acids, which reduces dangerous inflammation in the body and provides high levels of vitamin D. Salmon can be eaten fresh, canned, or smoked. Salmon is a great source of B12, niacin, selenium and calcium.
- Mackerel. A three ounce serving of cooked Mackerel contains 388 IUs of vitamin D. Mackerel is another oily fish that contains high levels of protein, selenium, niacin, vitamins B6 and B12. Mackerel is good for heart health and helps prevent heart attacks.
- Tuna. A three ounce serving of canned tuna packed in water contains 154 IUs of vitamin D. Tuna is another fish that is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, protein, niacin, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, and vitamin B12. Tuna is credited with lowering the risk of stroke, preventing high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease prevention, and Alzheimer prevention.
- Milk. A single eight ounce cup of milk contains 115 – 124 IUs of vitamin D. Whole milk, two percent milk, and skim milk; all provide a generous supply of vitamin D, A & B, calcium, carbohydrate, phosphorous, magnesium, protein, zinc and riboflavin. Milk works to neutralize cholesterol content and builds healthy bones in the body. If you are not a milk drinker, eat cheese, cottage cheese, or yogurt.