Myth busting

It is a common misconception that our bodies require different dosages of vitamin D depending on the season.  Not true!  If you are between the ages of 1-70 you require 600IU and 800IU for anyone over 70 years old.[1] And for your infant 0-12months, they need 400IUs daily. These daily recommended intakes do not change whether it is spring, summer, winter or fall.

Why all the hype?

While our bodies require the same amount of vitamin D throughout the year, it is harder to get during the winter months, leading some to think that we need more during this season. While we do not need more vitamin D in the winter, we do have to work harder to get it.  Why do we have to work harder? Because our bodies make vitamin D when our skin is exposed to sunlight and we are less exposed to sunlight in the winter months, meaning our bodies will naturally make less vitamin D than in the summertime.  But, regardless of our sun exposure, our body’s needs do not change.

 The fix

So, what is a snow bunny to do?!  We need to compensate for the lack of sunlight by increasing our D intake from other sources, like our diet and/or a daily vitamin D drop supplement (like Ddrops). Aim to eat a diet that is rich in fatty fish like salmon, tuna, and mackerel, shellfish like shrimp and oysters, egg yolks, fortified dairy products like plain Greek yogurt, cheese, and cow’s milk, fortified soy milk, and fortified plain oatmeal.  It can be hard to meet our vitamin D requirements from food alone, which is why it is very important to also supplement daily with vitamin D. Keep your vitamins by your morning coffee maker or on your nightstand, so it is always visible and you remember to take it.  It does not matter what time of day you get it in, as long as you get it in.


 

Brigitte Zeitlin, MPH, RD, CDN is a Ddrops guest blogger.  She is a registered dietitian-nutritionist and owner of BZ Nutrition, a private nutrition counseling practice in New York City. She works with clients to help them reach a variety of health goals and specializes in women’s nutrition, digestive disorders, heart health, weight management and general health and wellness. Brigitte is a contributing nutrition expert for SELF.com and has been featured in Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Women’s Health, US Health & News, and Bustle.  She loves to go for brunch in her West Village neighborhood, and always eats her eggs with the yolks! You can follow her @BrigitteZRD on Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat or stay in touch on Facebook.

[1]   National Institutes of Health, Office of Dietary Supplements. Vitamin D. Accessed on December 15, 2016. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminD-HealthProfessional/