The clocks are going back an hour on the 30th of October, which means less daylight. Sunshine makes vitamin D in your skin. Vitamin D is essential for bone health, and it’s harder to come by during the darker winter months due to fewer hours of sunshine.
The British Nutrition Foundation estimates that 49% of British adults are not getting enough vitamin D in wintertime from sunlight, food and supplements. This makes it harder for our bodies to absorb calcium, which can lead to the development of musculoskeletal issues, like back pain and muscle aches. It also increases your chance of osteoporosis and makes bone fractures more likely.
However, you can help your body to get more vitamin D this time of year by eating healthily and investing in a good quality vitamin D3 supplement.
- The Royal Osteoporosis Society estimates that we can only absorb enough vitamin D from the sun alone between March and September, so being outside during the winter is won’t help bone health.
- You’re not able to get enough vitamin D from food alone, but eating things like salmon, mackerel, eggs, liver, fortified yoghurt and full-fat milk can definitely help you to maintain healthy bones.
- Quit smoking. Research has shown that cigarette smoke decreases calcium levels, thereby using up more vitamin D in an effort to replace it. It also inhibits the expression of the gene that allows your body to absorb vitamin D.
- Consider a vitamin D3 supplement. Adding a good-quality supplement to your diet can help maintain bone and muscle health, as well as helping to protect you from flu and colds. It usually takes 6 to 8 weeks to feel the benefit of a daily vitamin D3 supplement. Try it in liquid form rather than a pill, as liquid is able to maintain active vitamin D3 levels for a longer period of time. We sell an excellent liquid Vitamin D here at Sundial.
If you’d like more advice on how to maintain musculoskeletal health, book an appointment at Sundial. We’re always happy to help you.