Vitamin D Everyone needs the sun
We all know the feeling when it is a sunny spring day and the sunlight meets your skin. Finally the weather is getting better again, and we stretch, almost like plants, towards the warming rays of the sun. The dismal winter months are quickly forgotten, and we feel so much better. But why is this the case?
The sun as a source of vitamins
Vitamin D distinguishes itself from other vitamins because it is the only one which can be produced by the body itself. And all it needs is sunlight (UV-B radiation). For this reason, vitamin D is also known as the "sun vitamin".
Another special feature of vitamin D: It can be stored. In contrast to vitamin C, for example, excess vitamin D is not simply excreted, but remains in the body. This makes it possible to build up reserves, and thus to cover an entire weeks' requirements through larger quantities of vitamin D.
Vitamin D in winter
These reserves are particularly important if the sun can only contribute a little towards our vitamin D requirements. In particular in winter and in the evenings, the UV radiation from the sun is frequently too weak to form sufficient vitamin D. Many people are exposed to too little sunlight due to their jobs. In addition, the capability of the skin to form vitamin D reduces as we age. Vitamin D is not contained in sufficient quantities in foodstuffs. Only particularly fatty fish such as herring, eel or trout are good suppliers of vitamin D.
According to investigations, over 60 % of people in Germany have insufficient supplies of vitamin D.
What does vitamin D do?
Supplying the body with vitamin D is therefore quite complex. And yet it is needed everywhere in the body. It not only contributes towards the maintenance of healthy bones and a healthy muscle function, but also supports the immune system.
According to the German Society for Nutrition (DGE), muscle-wasting can be delayed through vitamin D, or even reversed, whereby the risk of bone breakage in senior citizens can be reduced by 20 to 30 percent in case of falls.