A NEW LEASE—on Life!

By Judit Rajhathy, B.A., RNCP, D.Ac.

VITAMIN D--The Sunshine Vitamin!


“Can you imagine what would happen if a drug company came out with a single pill that reduces the risk of cancer, heart attack, stroke, osteoporosis, PMS, SAD, and various autoimmune disorders? There would be a media frenzy the likes of which has never been seen before! Well guess what? Such a drug exists . . . it is the sun.” (Michael Holick, physician, researcher, author and vitamin D expert)

Did you know that vitamin D is responsible for the health of the


respiratory system


hair follicles

adrenal glands

bone metabolism

brain and nervous system

heart and circulatory system

mood, mind, memory and behavior

immune system

The list is endless. And yes, this vitamin is also responsible for weight control - in particular carbohydrate and fat metabolism. But more important vitamin D deficiency plays a role in causing seventeen types of cancer including breast, colon and prostate. Dr Zoltan Rona, MD, MSc, author of Vitamin D - The Sunshine Vitamin says, “Vitamin D has been proven to regulate over two thousand genes in the body, and this may be why so many diseases are directly influenced by its availability.”

For the past five years Ronabegan to routinely measure the levels of vitamin D in his patients in Toronto, Canada and found that the majority had suboptimal levels of this important nutrient even during the summer months. He attributes this to 1) sun phobia - fear of sun exposure and hence the use of sunscreen and 2) the scary stories of vitamin D toxicity from oral supplements.

The best source of vitamin D is sunshine! Good thing we live here in Ajijic. We must have exposure to UVB rays in order to manufacture our own vitamin D - it really is that simple.  It is primarily UVA light and not UVB that is responsible for skin damage. One needs ten to twenty minutes of sun exposure. Of course it is dangerous to bask in the sun risking a burn. There is also controversy over sun screens and the potential harm it can create when heated. In fact dioxybenzone and oxybenzone both of which are in many sunscreens are two of the most powerful free radical generators. The best natural ingredients that block both UVA and UVB rays are titanium dioxide and zinc oxide but to be even safer why not use clothing, floppy hats, sunglasses or an umbrella.

Of course supplementation is another option if there is little or no access to sunshine. The old recommended daily allowance was 400 IU but now the Canadian Cancer Society recommends we take 1100 IU daily but even this is not enough to correct a deficiency. 4,000 IU is very safe and recommended by conservative complementary practitioners.

Testing for this essential nutrient:

Need to test blood levels of 25-hydroxy vitamin D or 25(OH)D and NOT the 1,25-dihydroxy test which is not as accurate.

Get tested every 3 months.

Then get those sneakers on and come back to the gym. You can always catch the rays later.

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