Vitamin D is a fat soluble nutrient required for proper immune functioning, control of cell growth and bone development. It is often called the “sunshine vitamin” as the body naturally produces it when exposed to the sun. Vitamin D regulates cellular growth and promotes calcium absorption in the body, leading to stronger bones.
Natural sources of vitamin D are limited. However, many packaged foods like soy drinks, orange juice, butter and milk come fortified with vitamin D. Here are five foods rich in vitamin D you should include in your diet.
- Oily Fish – Fish with high oil content like herring, mackerel, salmon and tuna are excellent sources of vitamin D. A single fillet of herring provides 306 IU of vitamin D, nearly half the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for an adult. 100 grams of canned salmon provides 91% of the vitamin D RDA. Mackerel fish is also a reliable source of vitamin D. This cold-water fish can be enjoyed both canned and raw. Besides providing vitamin D, oily fish can also help you obtain nutrients like omega 3-fatty acids, calcium, protein and phosphorus.
- Mushrooms – Mushrooms are one of the most viable sources of vitamin D. Mushrooms are exposed to the sun’s ultraviolet rays while growing, which increases their vitamin D value. The amount of vitamin D varies according to type and variety. White mushrooms, better known as button mushrooms are an excellent source of vitamin D. Four shiitake mushrooms provide a modest 3% of the vitamin D RDA and 140 calories. A cup of diced mushrooms provides a hearty 64% of the vitamin D RDA, while also being extremely low in calories.
- Milk – Most store-bought milk is fortified with vitamin D. You need to drink high amounts of fortified milk to stay healthy and fit. One cup of fortified milk will provide 21% of the vitamin D RDA.
- Eggs – A whole, large egg can provide you with 7% of the vitamin D RDA. The yolk of the egg can help you get 6% of the vitamin D RDA. Egg yolk also provides nutrients like vitamins A, E, K, D, iron and zinc. Eggs also contain protein, sulfur, essential amino acids and choline.
- Soy – Soy products like tofu and tempeh are foods rich in calcium and vitamin D. Make sure you check the nutritional label before purchasing soy products. A 100-gram serving of fortified tofu can provide you with 39% of the vitamin D RDA. Tofu is also an excellent source of protein.