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 four vitamin D rich foods you should definitely be eating.
- 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. There are so many delicious egg dishes, from deviled eggs and egg salad to scrambled and baked. Find a way to add at least one egg a week into your diet. If you’re watching your cholesterol, try using just the white of the egg or purchasing a carton of egg whites.
- Salmon – Fatty fish like salmon with a high oil content are excellent sources of vitamin D. 100 grams of salmon provides 91% of the vitamin D RDA. Besides providing vitamin D, oily fish can also help you obtain nutrients like omega 3-fatty acids, calcium, protein and phosphorus. Add grilled salmon to your favorite salad or add a generous helping of lox (salmon that has been cured with salt) to your breakfast bagel.
- 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. After a workout, a cold glass of milk can also help your muscles recover. If you’re looking for a little something sweet without diving into the cookie jar or freezer for ice cream, drink a cold glass of chocolate milk. It will satisfy that sweet craving and give you a boost of vitamin D.
- 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. Add tofu to a salad or your favorite stir fry. When blended, silken tofu adds a rich, creamy texture to desserts and smoothies.