The importance of Vitamin D
I have been giving my boys a vitamin supplement for as long as I can remember. Kipper had a special vitamin D supplement when he was tiny because he had a dairy intolerance and moved off of my breast milk and formula earlier than I would have liked. Which meant he could not get the required amount of vitamin D from milk. Even now I continue to make sure the boys take a supplement. Especially this time of year since they are not outside as much as I would like. Preferring to play trains or watch TV in the cosiness of the lounge. In the Summer its easy as they will spend as much time as possible playing in the sun. Often asking to go out at every opportunity so I don’t need to think about it. But the Wintertime is different they need real coxing.
So why is Vitamin D important?
Vitamin D helps to regulate the amount of calcium and phosphate in the body, which are needed to keep bones, teeth and muscles healthy, it also supports the normal function of the immune system in children and adults.
Myths about Vitamin D
In a recent article Dr Sarah Jarvis, who has over 30 years’ experience in the NHS and over 26 years as a GP discussed Vitamin D. Some of the most salient points are below:
- I can get it through diet – According to experts its almost impossible for people living in the UK to get enough Vitamin D through diet alone. You can get small amounts of vitamin D from food including oily fish, red meat, egg yolks, fortified drinks, cereals and milk. However you need to eat one portion a day for this to work. What many people don’t realise that a portion is ‘6 boiled eggs’ or ’10 Rump Steaks’.
- I will know when I am deficient – Vitamin D insufficiency and deficiency can present with no symptoms at all, though generalised muscle aches and low mood have been reported. Diagnosis is made through a blood test at your GP surgery.
- We are not doing enough as children are developing Rickets – Rickets is a condition where minerals aren’t laid down in bony tissue and bones become soft and deformed. It was a common occurrence in the past and mostly disappeared during the early 20thcentury after foods like margarine and cereal were fortified with vitamin D. However, in recent years cases of rickets are on the rise.
- So what the side effects are not that bad – Research says that that vitamin D deficiency weakens the immune system leading to other diseases such as respiratory infections. Not only that but Depression, breast and colorectal cancer have all been linked to low levels of vitamin D. There is also an increased risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease according to research**
- Its okay I have it under control – Only you can control the vitamin D levels you get throughout the year, so unless you spend a lot of time in the sun, consider a supplement
For the reasons mentioned above, we as a family are taking Vitamin D supplement Fultium Daily D3. Everyone in the UK, aged 1 and over requires 10 micrograms (μg) of vitamin D a day and 8.5-10 micrograms a day for infants under 1 year- particularly during the Winter months. Fultium Daily D3 is formulated specifically to meet the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition’s (SACN) and Public Health England’s (PHE) new recommended vitamin D guidelines.
Available in pharmacies only, in packs of 30s (RRP £3.99), 60s (RRP £7.49), 90s (RRP £10.99) and as 15ml drops (RRP £7.99). Fultium Daily D3 is free from artificial preservatives and sweeteners. The capsule gelatine is both Halal and Kosher certified and the drops are suitable for vegetarians. You can buy yours from Boots – here.
Have you been taking a Vitamin D supplement this Winter?
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This post has been written in collaboration with Fultium Daily D3, I was compensated for my time.