When Shantanu Moitra came up with the song “Give me some sunshine…” for the movie 3 Idiots, he perhaps didn’t know what an important message this was giving to the whole of Indian population! Did you know, 70-100% Indians suffer from Vitamin D deficiency! There is a tendency to think of Vitamin deficiency as not a serious issue. But Vit D deficiency leads to several health issues which can affect the quality of life. Most often the cause of deficiency is inadequate sunlight exposure.
Vitamin D is produced by our body in response to the skin being exposed to sunlight. Hence it is called the Sunshine Vitamin. It also occurs naturally in a few foods like some fish, fish oils and egg yolks. So a large number of people who are vegetarians end up being deficient.
It affects young and old alike and here is what you can do to avoid Vitamin D Deficiency.
- Firstly, eat a diet which is rich in Vitamin D like fish, eggs, dairy products, etc and if recommended by your doctor, then you can also take certain vitamin supplements if your condition is severe.
- Try to stay under the sun for about half an hour at least thrice every week
- Do not use sunscreens if you suffer from Vitamin D deficiency when you go out in the sun during summer
- People with darker skin need more sunlight exposure to produce adequate Vitamin D
- If you are Vitamin D deficient, try to maximize your exposure by getting directly below or at a right angle to the sun, with clothes which are not overly covering.
- Avoid taking a bath right after exposure to the sun, but wait for some time as Vitamin D is being formed on your outermost skin layering.
- During summer, even a short time spent under the sun would be particularly helpful in alleviating your Vitamin D problems. Try to exercise for some time every day in the sunlight
Never miss a chance to get out and get some sun! It does you a lot more good than you ever realize!