Vitamin D Food Sources

Some of the best vitamin D food sources have had vitamin D added to them during their processing, which is called fortification. Others contain the nutrient naturally, and are easy to fit into your daily routine.

It is critically important to get enough vitamin D food sources in your life. Without it, you run the risk of all sorts of unpleasant disorders including rickets, calcium malabsorption, osteoporosis, and even increased risk of some kinds of cancers, especially breast cancer and bone cancer.




Experts now recommend you get at least 1000 IU (International Units) of vitamin D each day, which is a big boost from the previous 1994 daily values of 450 IU a day.

Fortunately, there are plenty of vitamin D food sources available so simply by adding certain things to your diet you can make sure you are getting enough vitamin D.

Some of the best vitamin D food sources are fatty fish. Fish can carry a lot of vitamin D in their fat, and the more fat a fish has, the more vitamin D you can get when you eat it.

If you like herring, you are in luck, because it offers an amazing 1383 IU of vitamin D in only 3 ounces. If you are not a herring fan, the next best type of fish is catfish, at 425 IU for 3 ounces, followed by salmon at 360 IU, mackerel at 345 IU, sardines at 250 IU for a 1.75 ounce can, a 3 ounce can of tuna at 200 IU, and 3.5 ounces of cooked eel will net you 200 IU.

vitamin d food sources

On the subject of fish, you can also supplement your diet with cod liver or fish oil and get 1360 IU of vitamin D quickly and easily in a single tablespoon.

You have to be careful with cod liver oil though, as while it has a lot of vitamin D, it also has a lot of vitamin A, and it is a lot easier to get too much vitamin A than D.

Overdosing on vitamin A can have some pretty negative health consequences, and it is especially tough on your liver. If you are going to add fish oil into your daily diet, just make sure you are not also taking vitamin supplements with a lot of vitamin A in them. As usual, if you read the labels you should be just fine.

If you are not a fish person, you can also get a good amount of vitamin D in your diet by eating eggs, which offer a not insignificant 20 IU per egg.

That may not sound like a lot, but when you think of how many of the foods you may eat every day contain eggs, you may realize you are getting far more vitamin D from eggs than you might think. If you eat liver, you can also get a little more of a vitamin D kick as 3.5 ounces of cooked beef liver will get you 15 IU.

There are also other vitamin D food sources in addition to those that are naturally occurring, and you are probably including them in your diet without even realizing it.

Since the 1960s or so, many food producers have been fortifying their products with vitamin D. Most milk is fortified to provide you with about 100 IU per 1 cup serving, as are many juices.

You can also get vitamin D fortified flours and dairy products made using the fortified milk. There are also many dairy substitutes like rice, soymilk and margarine.



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