Vitamin D deficiency weight gain is problematic for many people. It's associated with health issues like insulin resistance, weight gain and abdominal fat. Vitamin D helps build a hormone in the body called calcitriol that helps create strong bones and teeth, promotes normal cell growth, helps maintain a healthy immune system and helps prevent obesity.
Vitamin D deficiency weight gain has increased with today’s lifestyle and habits. Sun exposure is an important source of vitamin D. In the past, people spent time outdoors and received more exposure to the sun. Today, people often work and exercise indoors away from the sun.
Eat healthy and exercise regularly. Fat cells absorb vitamin D. Overweight individuals need more vitamin D and are more at risk for vitamin D deficiency weight gain. Regular exercise, healthy eating and a high-fiber diet helps individuals maintain a healthy weight.
Drink milk and eat foods fortified with vitamin D. Most milk and some cereals are fortified with vitamin D. Read food labels to find other products fortified with vitamin D.
Eat foods with natural vitamin D. A few foods are a natural source of vitamin D. A serving of fatty fish such as salmon, herring, mackerel or tuna provides about 30 percent or more of the daily requirements for vitamin D. Beef liver, cheese, mushrooms, meat and egg yolks also contain vitamin D.
Take a daily vitamin D3 supplement. Vitamin D in the form of D3 (cholecalciferol) is similar to vitamin D from sun exposure to the skin. Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin. Take vitamin D with fat-containing food such as nuts, meats and low fat dairy products for optimal absorption.
Get safe sun exposure. The body can manufacture vitamin D3 from sunlight. Expose some skin to direct sunlight for 15 to 30 minutes a few days a week without sunscreen. Early morning or late afternoon hours have less ultraviolet (UV) rays. Do not stay out long enough to be sunburned. Widespread use of sunscreens inhibits the sun’s UV rays from striking the skin and generating vitamin D.
Take vitamin D with a calcium supplement. Vitamin D helps the body to absorb calcium. Calcium is not only important for healthy bones, but also helps the body maintain a healthy weight.
Get vitamin D blood levels checked by a doctor. Older individuals and people with diabetes and other health related issues may need more vitamin D to prevent vitamin D deficiency weight gain.