Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few years, then you probably have heard of this very special vitamin that we get through the sun. In this article, I am going to compile a list of foods high in Vitamin D.
I will tell you right away that if you are one of those that is against supplements and prefers to get all their vitamins and minerals through diet, then you are probably going to be disappointed. Even if you consume a lot of foods high in vitamin d, it won’t make up for inadequate sun exposure.
I’ve written quite a few posts on Vitamin D before:
- Vitamin D function and health benefits
- Causes of Low Vitamin D levels
- Vitamin D Deficiency Symptoms
- What does Vitamin D do for the body
I’m not going to review all the amazing health benefits of this vitamin here, but if you want more info on that then you should check out some of my other posts.
I would like to mention, though, that many experts and health authorities believe that the RDA for Vitamin D is way too low since the human body can produce up to 10.000IU in about 20-30 minutes of strong sun (the RDA is about 600IU).
Alright, let’s get to it.
List of foods high in Vitamin D
There are certain foods that are high in natural Vitamin D, but you would still have to consume unrealistic amounts to compensate for lack of sun.
Cod fish liver oil. This is a very rich source of Vitamin D, a single tablespoon may contain about a 1000IU.
Fatty fish. Fish does contain a substantial amount of Vitamin D, but it has to be fatty fish (Vitamin D is fat soluble). Examples include salmon, sardines and mackerel. Tuna contains quite a bit of it too, even though it is not strictly a “fat” fish.
Shiitake Mushrooms. These types of mushrooms contain a large amount of the vitamin. Where to find them, I could not say.
That’s it… there are a number of other foods that contain natural Vitamin D (such as egg yolks) but the amounts are so small that they are negligible.
Synthetic Vitamin D Rich Foods
There are a number of foods that have been supplemented with synthetic Vitamin D, such as milk, margarine and some cereals.
I wouldn’t rely on these processed foods though, if you really must get your Vitamin D through natural methods then you should try to get them through cod liver oil, fatty fish and regular sun exposure.
If you live far in the northern hemisphere like me, then you are probably going to need to take a Vitamin D supplement, at least during the winter months.
As you can see from this list of foods high in vitamin d, it is pretty difficult to get the recommended amount from food. The Vitamin D Council recommends at least 5000IU per day for adults who lack sun exposure.