Friday Factoid: Vitamin D Has a Mental Health Connection


An article from U.S. News & World Report wrote about the importance of vitamin D and how our lives could depend on it! The article noted that some studies suggest that half of the world’s population has a vitamin D

deficiency. They went on to discuss the conditions to which vitamin D deficiency can lead including cancer, heart disease, multiple sclerosis, tuberculosis, brittle bones, the common cold, and depression. A study released in August noted a link between vitamin D deficiency and increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s. Furthermore, a study published this week even found a link between low levels of vitamins D and risk of early death. The article quoted John Cannell, found of the Vitamin D Council who stated, “Thirty-seven different tissues in the human body utilize vitamin D and need it for adequate functioning.”

How can you get enough vitamin D?


1.     The sun! Although the article stated that production of vitamin D from the sun


decreases with age and those individuals with darker skin need more sun exposure for sufficient levels of vitamin D. Furthermore, sunscreen decreases the production of vitamin D (Sunscreen is very important! There are other ways to get vitamin D. Read on!)


2.     Some foods: egg (especially egg yolks), fatty fish (e.g. salmon, mackerel, and tuna), fo


rtified cow’s milk, fortified cereals and bread products.


3.     Supplements. According to the article, 800 international units of vitamin D per day is typically advised. It is possible to take in too much vitamin D, so do your research!




Woodham, C. (November 20, 2014). Are you getting enough vitamin D? U.S. News & World Report Health.


Brittany Best,
WKPIC Intern



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