What Foods Are a Good Source of Vitamin D?

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that acts as a pro-hormone in control of hormone balance and immune function. You need vitamin D to support calcium uptake into the bones and to encourage cell replication. Don’t skimp on the vitamin D, because it’s protecting your bones and teeth and keeping you safe from serious health issues, such as cancer and multiple sclerosis.

The Sunshine Vitamin

The best way to get vitamin D is to expose your bare, SPF-free skin to the sunlight. Your skin then converts ultraviolet B sunrays into a form of vitamin D called vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol).

Your body can produce 10,000 to 25,000 IU of vitamin D in a little under the time it takes for your skin to begin to burn. This could be as minimal as 15 minutes for someone who is fair-skinned. Easy does it…you don’t want to burn!

Vitamin D Supplement Benefits

The next best way to shore up vitamin D levels in the body is to take a supplement that contains 100% of the RDA for vitamin D (which is 600 to 800 IUs).

Which vitamin D supplement to take? Good question, since there are tons on the market to choose from!

The Vitamin D Council recommends taking a supplement made with vitamin D3, because that’s the form of vitamin D our skin makes from the sun. Scientists have found that vitamin D3 is approximately 87% more effective at raising and maintaining vitamin D concentrates and results in a 2- to 3-fold greater storage of vitamin D than does vitamin D2. D3 also converts into its active form 500% faster than D2 does.

From there, it’s a matter of personal preference. You could take a separate vitamin D supplement, or you could make things more convenient by taking a multivitamin that contains your daily requirements for vitamin D. If you’re looking for a high quality vitamin D3 multivitamin that contains 42 essential nutrients and a probiotic complex, then we recommend enhancing your overall health with RejuvaPlex.

By boosting and maintaining levels of vitamin D, a vitamin D supplement helps to:

  • Support the health of bones and teeth.
  • Promote the proper functioning of the immune system, brain, and nervous system.
  • Balance insulin levels.
  • Enhance lung function and cardiovascular health.
  • Subdue the expression of genes involved in cancer development.

What Foods Are a Good Source of Vitamin D?

The third best way to get vitamin D is by eating vitamin D-rich foods.

  • Cod liver oil (1 tsp. = 440 IU)
  • Salmon (3 oz. = 400 IU)
  • Mackerel (3 oz. = 400 IU)
  • Tuna (3 oz. = 228 IU)
  • Sardines (3 oz. = 164 IU)
  • Raw milk (1 cup = 98 IU)
  • Eggs (1 large = 41 IU)
  • Caviar (1 oz. = 33 IU)

Fruits and Vegetables High in Vitamin D

It’s a bit more difficult to eat your way to adequate vitamin D when you’re a vegetarian. Vitamin-D fortified foods and beverages, such as vitamin-D fortified orange juice, can help give your body a vitamin D boost, but your best bet is to start cooking with mushrooms.

Mushrooms are the only plant-based food that can make vitamin D from the sun, much like our bodies do. Unfortunately, most commercially made mushrooms are cultivated indoors and in the dark. Your best bet is to buy (or grow your own!) wild mushrooms, like maitake, chanterelles, and morels, which get the sun exposure they need for maximum vitamin D delivery.

Before eating your mushrooms try this handy vitamin D trick: Expose your mushrooms to direct sunlight, with the mushroom’s gills facing the sun.

Scientists have discovered that when mushrooms are exposed to sunlight or UV lamps they produce a significant amount of vitamin D. Fifteen minutes is all it takes for them to make enough vitamin D to meet your RDA.


About the Author:

Erica Greene has enjoyed a thriving career as a wellness writer and editor for over 25 years. As Managing Editor of the Journal of Natural Longevity, Erica loves to unite the vast wealth of knowledge she has acquired as a veteran health writer, together with her managing editor talents to bring you the most up-to-date natural health alternatives and breaking news around the world.