Vitamin D is an important vitamin that many of us are deficient in. The best source of Vitamin D is from the sun, when the sun is at its highest in the sky.
This time of year we won't have much sun and if you weren't exposed to much sunshine during the summer months you may need to top up with vitamin D to keep you in tip top shape.
Vitamin D is important for our mental health and our mood. One of its most important functions is to help us absorb calcium to ensure we have strong bones. It supports immunity helping to protect us from colds and flu, and helps fight infection.
The main food sources include cod liver oil, oily fish, eggs, cheese, butter, fortified dairy products, and cereals.
Some health issues associated with Vitamin D deficiency include osteoporosis, lowered immunity, low mood, and hormonal imbalance. Bone pain and muscle weakness are a symptom of deficiency. A deficiency can increase the risk of heart disease and cancer. Both adults and young children are at risk of Vitamin D deficiency. So as you can see it is an important vitamin and it's worth considering whether you need to take extra.
You'll find vitamin D2 and vitamin D3 supplements, D3 (cholecalciferol) is commonly made from extracts from sheep's wool (lanolin),it's also made from lichen which is suitable for vegetarians and vegans. D2 (ergocalciferol) is the synthetic form vitamin D present in many supplements. D3 is considered the more absorbable form Vitamin. Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin meaning that it's better absorbed in the presence of fats or oils.
The amount needed will vary from person to person, a blood test will help you decide. Some people will judge according to how they feel, for example a drop in mood in the darker days can be an indicator, if you also get lots of colds and flu this may be another sign. Most people take 1000iu at this time of year.
Why not have a chat with the staff in your local store to help you choose.