What’s a great way to get vitamin D? The sun! Dr. Fuhrman explains:
Sun exposure is perhaps the most important source of vitamin D because exposure to sunlight provides most humans with their vitamin D requirement. The further you live from the equator, the longer you need to be exposed to the sun in order to generate vitamin D. Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that your body makes after exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun. Vitamin D functions as a hormone because it sends a message to the intestines to increase the absorption of calcium and phosphorus.
Now, lack of vitamin D is being linked to depression in the elderly
. The AFP
"Underlying causes of vitamin D deficiency such as less sun exposure as a result of decreased outdoor activity, different housing or clothing habits and decreased vitamin intake may be secondary to depression, but depression may also be the consequence of poor vitamin D levels," the study, released Monday, said.
Researchers from Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, studied some 1,282 senior citizens aged between 65 and 95, and found 26 had major depression, while 169 suffered from minor depression.
Vitamin D levels were 14 percent lower in those elderly suffering from some kind of depression, according to the study published in the Archives of General Psychiatry.
It found that poor vitamin D status also led to an increase in levels of a hormone secreted by the parathyroid. Overactive parathyroid glands are frequently associated with depression.
I’m no doctor, but some extra sun exposure couldn’t hurt—right?