Plant-Based Vitamin D
Plants have the ability to provide vitamins and minerals in abundance. If you choose to live a plant-based lifestyle your body will certainly thank you for nourishing it with amazing foods which are beneficial to your health. However, there is one vitamin, in particular, that is quite difficult to obtain on a vegetarian and vegan diet. This vitamin is vitamin D. Today I am going to share with you ways in which you can find plant-based sources of vitamin D.
Why Vitamin D?
Before diving right into ways to find vitamin D for vegans and vegetarians, it is important we all understand why this vitamin is essential in the first place. The job of vitamin D in the body is to regulate the amounts of calcium and phosphate within the body. By regulating calcium and phosphate, our bones, teeth and muscles are able to remain healthy. Without the presence of vitamin D, there would be no regulation of calcium and phosphate therefore side effects such as bone deformities and bone pain could potentially occur.
My favourite place as a human being, plant-based and meat-eaters alike, to receive vitamin D is from our lovely friend, the sunshine. When talking about the sunshine, we can forget all about the best vegan vitamin D supplement. The best place to receive our intake of vitamin D is indeed from the rays of the sun. It is the sun’s UV B rays which reach the cholesterol in our skin cells further allowing the process of vitamin D synthesis to occur. The only problem with relying on the sun upon your daily dose of vitamin D is that the sunshine sometimes forgets to shine down on us. My recommendation for you is that you should take full advantage of the sun when it is out, and on grey, days seek out your vegan D3 supplement.
Rich in vitamin D foods for vegetarians and vegans can be hard to find. In fact, there is only one plant-based food, excluding fortified foods, that has the ability to provide vitamin D to the human body. This magical food just so happens to be mushroom. When exposed to the sunshine, mushrooms are energized and able to synthesize vitamin D. Though, it is only vitamin D2 that arises from this process, whereas animal products have the ability to provide vitamin D3. What we’re learning here is that vitamin D in plants is hard to come by. Some more vitamin D3 vegan foods would fall under the fortified category. Some of these fortified foods are soy milk and orange juice. If you are going to rely on mushrooms for your intake of vitamin D, try leaving them by a window so they are able to receive the UV B rays from the sunshine. Without them, mushrooms are not considered a source of vitamin D.
The last thing we are going to cover today is vitamin D supplement vegan sources. There are two main ways in which one can supplement vitamin D3. There is the option to ingest this vitamin in either pill form or liquid form. Whilst shopping for your vitamin D supplement of choice, be careful as not all supplements are vegan or vegetarian friendly. One of my favourite vitamin D pill supplements is Country Life’s Vegan D3. Not only is this pill vegetarian and vegan friendly, but the price sits at around $30 for 60 capsules which is not bad at all. That is around $15 a month spent on vitamin D3 which I would argue is totally worth it. Moving forward, my favourite way to supplement vitamin D3 is when it is in liquid form. I feel as if my body absorbs these vitamins more effectively when ingesting liquids over pills. This may not be true for everyone so you can make this decision for yourself. However, a great liquid vitamin D3 supplement is My Kinds Organics’ Vegan D3. This supplement is also sitting in an affordable price range at $21 for 2 fl oz.
Have Your Pick
Now that you know vitamin D vegetarian sources as well as sources of vitamin D vegan edition, it’s time to have your pick. It doesn’t matter which method you choose, but it does matter that you choose at least one. As mentioned before, vitamin D is very important to maintain a healthy and functioning body. I understand not always wanting to supplement, so perhaps during the winter seasons you supplement and during the summer you bask in the sunshine. Best of luck!
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