Updated: Sep 8, 2021
Health Gem 9/2/2021
It’s September and fall is coming! This means that we will begin to have less time to spend out in the sun. Here in North Carolina, we live below the 37th parallel so we have a little more sun than the rest of the country. But we will still need to make a conscious effort to spend time in the sun to make and build up our Vit. D levels naturally.
Vitamin D is most known for its benefits in bone health. If we don’t have enough Vitamin D our bodies cannot properly absorb calcium and so begin to leach it from our bones increasing our risk of osteoporosis. But vitamin D also plays important roles with cells, tissues, genes, preventing some forms of cancer and in our immune systems. Our immune system needs vit. D to help us fight off VIRUSES (especially like the one we are dealing with now)!
According to an article from Harvard University, 10-15 minutes of sun exposure on your arms and legs (and face) a few times a week should be adequate to make what we need. The most effective time to do that would be between the hours of 10-2 (you make the most vitamin D when your shadow is shorter than you).
If you are over the age of 65 you will need a little more time as you make about ¼ as much as those in their 20’s. The darker your skin is, the longer you will need exposure as well.
What role can vitamin D play with Covid? Mayo Clinic listed this information about some studies that were done:
Several recent studies have looked at the impact of vitamin D on COVID-19. One study of 489 people found that those who had a vitamin D deficiency were more likely to test positive for the virus that causes COVID-19 than people who had normal levels of vitamin D.
Other research has observed high rates of vitamin D deficiency in people with COVID-19 who experienced acute respiratory failure. These people had a significantly higher risk of dying. And a small, randomized study found that of 50 people hospitalized with COVID-19 who were given a high dose of a type of vitamin D (calcifediol), only one needed treatment in the intensive care unit. In contrast, among the 26 people with COVID-19 who weren't given calcifediol, 13 needed to be treated in the intensive care unit.
Isn’t it wonderful that God has blessed us with tools, precious gems, to keep ourselves healthy? Let's get out there and spend more time in the sun making our own vitamin D to help strengthen our immune systems.
**These are beneficial health suggestions. These statements are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. This is not a substitute for speaking with your health professional.