A few more weeks to naturally boost your vitamin D levels
Blog Author: Kia Dullemond, BScPosted: Thursday, August 25, 2016 - 09:50
Vitamin D has many known positive effects, including reducing the risk of developing some serious diseases and improving mood and well-being. But because of Canada’s northern latitude our time frame for getting the most from the sun’s rays is short (May to October). When the UV index is above 3 and your shadow is shorter than your height is when you can make vitamin D.
Approximately 12 million Canadians do not meet vitamin D blood level requirements set by Health Canada and the Institute of Medicine, and this figure rises to more than 40% during winter, making spring and summer an important time for Canadians to naturally create vitamin D from sunlight.
According to Cancer Research UK, enjoying the sun safely, while taking care not to burn, can help to provide the benefits of vitamin D without unduly raising the risk of skin cancer. The Vitamin D Society encourages Canadians to use their time in the sun wisely to stock up on the sunshine vitamin but to remember to use common sense and not let skin burn. The best way to generate vitamin D is by going out into the sun for 15 to 30 minutes, 2 to 3 times per week, and adjusting your time in the sun accordingly if you burn easily.
The Vitamin D Society recommends people achieve and maintain optimal 25(OH)D blood levels between 100 and 150 nmol/L.
UBC Medicine, Class of 2019
This posting has not been peer reviewed by the BCMJ Editorial Board.