What is Vitamin D? Questions

What is Vitamin D? Questions;- There’s lots of talk about vitamin D these days, but what exactly is it? And why do you need so much of it? It turns out that vitamin D has a lot to do with sunlight and our bodies. Let’s explore the ins and outs of this crucial nutrient!

What is Vitamin D?

You probably know what a vitamin is. But do you know how to pronounce it? Supplements or pills that contain vitamins often have the word “vita” in the name, like vitamin D.

The word vitamin comes from the Latin word for life, because vitamins are needed to sustain life. Every day your body uses up nutrients and produces waste products. Your body needs vitamins to rebuild itself and fight off infections before they become serious problems, such as scurvy (a disease caused by lack of vitamin C), rickets (a disease caused by lack of vitamin D), or beriberi (a disease caused by lack of thiamine).

Who needs it?

Vitamin D is an essential nutrient that plays a role in many body processes. It helps with:

  • Healthy bones
  • Calcium absorption (important for strong bones)
  • Immune system function (helps your body fight infections)
  • Muscle function, blood pressure regulation, and more!

What foods contain vitamin D?

  • Fish
  • Eggs
  • Fortified milk and dairy products, such as cheese and yogurt.

The following foods may also contain vitamin D:

Which are the best sources of vitamin D?

  • Egg yolks
  • Salmon
  • Milk and milk products, such as cheese and yogurt
  • Fortified foods, such as breakfast cereal and juice You can also get vitamin D from supplements or fortified margarine.

Can I get all my Vitamin D from sunlight?

Yes, you can get all your vitamin D from sunlight. The amount of time you need to spend in the sun will depend on your skin type and the time of year. In general, you should expose your skin to sunlight for 20-30 minutes per day between 10 am and 3 pm during the summer months (May through October). If you don’t know your skin type, a simple web search will tell you whether yours is “fair” or “dark.”

The most important thing to know about getting vitamin D from sunlight is that it’s actually not very efficient at producing it! This means that even if you are able to expose yourself to sunlight long enough each day during the summer months (when UVB levels are relatively high), there’s still a chance that some people may not make enough vitamin D—in particular those with darker skin who tend not be able to absorb as much UVB light as others with lighter complexions.[1]

How does my body make Vitamin D from sunlight?

How does my body make Vitamin D from sunlight?

Vitamin D is made by your skin when it’s exposed to ultraviolet B (UVB) rays. The UVB rays react with a cholesterol-like substance in the skin to form pre-vitamin D, which converts into vitamin D in the liver and kidneys.

What is the recommended daily amount of Vitamin D?

The recommended daily amount of vitamin D is 600 IU. This is the minimum amount that should be taken daily. If you are not getting enough sunlight, you may want to increase your intake by 1000 IU per day.

A teaspoon of cod liver oil contains 500 IU of vitamin D. That’s two-thirds as much as a glass (8 ounces) of skim milk and only half as much as a cup (8 ounces) of fortified breakfast cereal.*

A teaspoon of salmon has about 100 IU of vitamin D, while a similar serving size of sardines contains 400 IU.*

Just looking at the sun allows your body to make vitamin D.

You can also get vitamin D from the sun. Your body makes vitamin D when your skin is exposed to sunlight. This is called “natural” or “ultraviolet B” (UVB) light exposure and it’s important because it helps you absorb calcium, which keeps your bones strong.

The amount of time you need to spend in the sun depends on your age and weight, but if you’re not sure how much UVB light exposure it takes for your body to make enough vitamin D, talk with a doctor or dietitian.


The best way to get enough vitamin D is by getting sun exposure every day. This can be as simple as walking outside for a few minutes. You can also eat foods that are high in vitamin D and/or take supplements if you feel like you aren’t getting enough from your diet alone. Remember to always talk to your doctor before taking any supplements or changing up how much sun you’re getting in order to ensure they’re safe for you!