March 15th, 2013 → 2:44 am @

Sunshine and Vitamin D

Hello readers,

I MUST repeat myself again on a very important subject and that is the SUN.

I have stated in an earlier article, about the importance of getting sunshine on our bodies for GOOD health.
Everything alive depends on the sun to survive and without it, we will perish.

Just the other day, I read an article on the news, where a very well known TV presenter, has made a statement about her lack of Vitamin D. She is an Australian and lives(d) on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland. She likes the out-doors and obviously has been told to SLIP_SLOP_SLAP, in other words she has been covering up her body from the sun, to protect her from excess UV rays, so she won’t get sunburnt.

All this is very well, except that we NEED sun on every part of our body, so sunbathing in the nude, would be very HEALTHY, BUT, yes there is a BUT, common sense must prevail.

The statement put out by the government about: “There is nothing healthy about a sun tan”, is very false, because we need a suntan to protect ourselves from sun-burn. It is like putting on a jumper, when we are getting cold. It is a protection. The point is that we must be sensible and take things easy, especially when we start the new season again. Also we must consider our type of skin. A really pale skinned person, with reddish hair, will never get a sun-tan, but still needs some exposure to sunlight on a daily basis, in very small doses, to get vitamin D. These people should also take supplements and eat foods with vitamin D in them, like some fish. Read on. An olive skinned person, can take things just a little easier and can have a little more sun to start, but I still suggest to use common sense, something the governing powers don’t seem to give us credit for. It would be better to properly educate people from school age onwards, to learn to have small doses of sun exposure to start the season and increase that a little at the time, as we get along, rather than just covering up all the time, when we are outside. That way we will never get sun-burnt and we will be healthy at the same time. I am an example of that. When I lived in Holland as a child, the doctor at that time realised that my body needed UV radiation and my mother took me to the hospital to have that done 3 times a week. I was a healthy pup after that and when I came to Australia at the age of 19, I continued sunning at a healthy rate and still at the age of 80, I am doing so whenever I can. I sport a healthy colour and I do not look if I was born into an aboriginal family. That is not the reason I sunbathe. I do it for health sake. My skin looks young and healthy and is not wrinkled. Even dark skinned people can get sunburnt you know. If one of them was to stay indoors and suddenly went back into too much sun, he/she would get sunburnt.

The following article was taken from the internet and will help you understand even more.

If you shun the sun, suffer from milk allergies, or adhere to a strict vegetarian diet, you may be at risk for vitamin D deficiency. Known as the sunshine vitamin, vitamin D is produced by the body in response to sunlight. It is also occurs naturally in a few foods — including some fish, fish liver oils, and egg yolks — and in fortified dairy and grain products.

Vitamin D is essential for strong bones because it helps the body use calcium from the diet. Traditionally, vitamin D deficiency has been associated with rickets, a disease in which the bone tissue doesn’t properly mineralize, leading to soft bones and skeletal deformities. But increasingly, research is revealing the importance of vitamin D in protecting against a host of health problems.

Symptoms and Health Risks of Vitamin D Deficiency

Symptoms of bone pain and muscle weakness can mean you have a vitamin D deficiency. However, for many people, the symptoms are subtle. Yet even without symptoms, too little vitamin D can pose health risks. Low blood levels of the vitamin have been associated with the following:

  • Increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease
  • Cognitive impairment in older adults
  • Severe asthma in children
  • Cancer

Research suggests that vitamin D could play a role in the prevention and treatment of a number of different conditions, including type1 and type 2 diabetes, hypertension, glucose intolerance, and multiple sclerosis.

Causes of Vitamin D Deficiency

Vitamin D deficiency can occur for a number of reasons:

You don’t consume the recommended levels of the vitamin over time. This is likely if you follow a strict vegetarian diet, because most of the natural sources are animal-based, including fish and fish oils, egg yolks, cheese, fortified milk, and beef liver.

Your exposure to sunlight is limited. Because the body makes vitamin D when your skin is exposed to sunlight, you may be at risk of deficiency if you are homebound, live in northern latitudes, wear long robes or head coverings for religious reasons, or have an occupation that prevents sun exposure.

You have dark skin. The pigment melanin reduces the skin’s ability to make vitamin D in response to sunlight exposure. Some studies show that older adults with darker skin are at high risk of vitamin D deficiency.

Your kidneys cannot convert vitamin D to its active form. As people age their kidneys are less able to convert vitamin D to its active form, thus increasing their risk of vitamin D deficiency.

Your digestive tract cannot adequately absorb vitamin D. Certain medical problems, including Crohn’s disease, cystic fibrosis, and celiac disease, can affect your intestine’s ability to absorb vitamin D from the food you eat.

You are obese. Vitamin D is extracted from the blood by fat cells, altering its release into the circulation. People with a body mass index of 30 or greater often have low blood levels of vitamin D.

Tests for Vitamin D Deficiency

The most accurate way to measure how much vitamin D is in your body is the 25-hydroxy vitamin D blood test. A level of 20 nanograms/milliliter to 50 ng/mL is considered adequate for healthy people. A level less than 12 ng/mL indicates vitamin D deficiency.

Treatment for Vitamin D Deficiency

Treatment for vitamin D deficiency involves getting more vitamin D — through diet and supplements. Although there is no consensus on vitamin D levels required for optimal health — and it likely differs depending on age and health conditions — a concentration of less than 20 nanograms per milliliter is generally considered inadequate, requiring treatment.

Guidelines from the Institute of Medicine increased the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin D to 600 international units (IU) for everyone aged 1-70, and raised it to 800 IU for adults older than 70 to optimize bone health. The safe upper limit was also raised to 4,000 IUs.

If you don’t spend much time in the sun or always are careful to cover your skin (sunscreen inhibits vitamin D production), you should speak to your doctor about taking a vitamin D supplement, particularly if you have risk factors for vitamin D deficiency.

I hope this will clear the air again, with some more scientific results.


Shanti with love.


Comments are closed.