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Nutrition 101

Q: What are Some Good Sources of Vitamin D?

Q: What are Some Good Sources of Vitamin D?

Senior Culinary Nutritionist Natalia Hancock suggests what to eat to boost your vitamin D levels.

What does vitamin D do?

Vitamin D’s main function is to increase the absorption and metabolism of calcium and phosphorus -- minerals that promote strong and healthy bones and teeth. However, an adequate intake of vitamin D may also be linked with improved immune system, weight loss and decreased risk of diseases such as:

  • multiple sclerosis
  • psoriasis
  • type II diabetes
  • certain cancers
  • cardiovascular diseases


Dietary sources of vitamin D

You may have heard that we get most of our vitamin D through sunlight; according to WebMD, only around 20% of vitamin D is absorbed via our diets. Though many foods are fortified with vitamin D (such as dairy, cereals, soy and orange juice) the reason this figure is so low is because few foods naturally contain this "sunlight vitamin." I recommend that – in addition to getting some sun – you supplement your vitamin D levels by helping yourself to the following foods in which vitamin D is naturally present:

  • Cod liver oil (not strictly a food, but one of the best natural sources of vitamin D)
  • Fish (especially raw, fatty fish  such as swordfish, salmon, mackerel, herring and sardines)
  • Oysters
  • Beef liver
  • Pork
  • Caviar
  • Egg yolks
  • Cheese
  • Mushrooms


More questions about vitamin D? Read R.D. Andrea Canada’s post on vitamin D deficiency and symptoms.

nutrition advice, nutrition facts, vitamin d

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