Much has been written about the harmful effects of UV rays: it can cause premature aging, sun spots, and wrinkles. It may even cause skin cancer or basal cell carcinoma. In recognition of July being UV safety month, did you also know that your body needs Vitamin D? The sun is a great, free source of this much-needed vitamin. But what is the function of Vitamin D to your body?

Benefits of Vitamin D

Three of the most important functions of Vitamin D in the body include:

1. Vitamin D helps regulate the absorption of phosphorous and calcium in the body, thus promoting strong growth of bones and teeth.
2. A good dose of Vitamin D may also help you veer away from developing bone problems like osteoporosis or fragile bones and osteomalacia or soft bones.
3. Vitamin D may help support a strong immune system, hence helping your body develop strong resistance against diseases.

However, certain factors like pollution, spending too much time indoors and little time outdoors, long working hours in the office, graveyard shift work that requires you to sleep during the day and insufficient sleep can limit your ability to get sufficient amounts of Vitamin D.

So, how can you get Vitamin D? Simple. Quick exposure to the sun even for 10 minutes can go a long way. A morning jog at six or seven in the morning or a quick swim before 10 in the morning will give you a good daily of Vitamin D to help keep your bones strong and healthy while avoiding over exposure.

Apart from getting Vitamin D from the sun, some foods also contain Vitamin D. Get a dose in your diet by eating food like salmon, shrimp, egg yolk, cereal, yogurt, or drinking milk or orange juice.