Often called the Sunshine Vitamin, we look into the benefits and sources of Vitamin D.

One of the benefits of Vitamin D is that it helps to regulate the absorption of Calcium in the body. Therefore, we need sufficient amounts to ensure the normal growth and development of our bones and teeth and to help prevent osteoporosis. Even if you get lots of Calcium from your diet, without enough Vitamin D the Calcium can’t be absorbed properly into the bones and cells where it’s needed.

Most of our Vitamin D comes from the sun. It is made under the skin when exposed to the sun’s ultraviolet rays. To make the optimum amount, it is recommended to have approximately 15 minutes of sun exposure, two to three days a week. Make sure that sunscreen is used after 15 minutes of exposure to protect your skin from the harmful rays that can burn skin, cause premature ageing and skin cancer.

In the UK the sun is only strong enough for us to make Vitamin D between the months of April-September. During these months, our bodies store the vitamin to be used up in winter when the sun is too weak to be used effectively. If we can’t get enough from sunlight, the best way to get enough Vitamin D is from our food or from a health food supplement.

The best food sources of Vitamin D include oily fish such as salmon, sardines, pilchards and trout. Eggs, meat and milk are also a source. It can be hard to get adequate levels of the vitamin from food alone, so you can also take a nutritionally balanced food supplement like the Potion London ‘Bone Formula’ to ensure that you are getting the correct amount of this vital nutrient every day, even when the sun isn’t shining.