When the leaves change colors the availability of ultraviolet light to make vitamin D (UVB) disappears till next spring. Your vitamin D level then begins to fall along with all the leaves on the deciduous trees. Ten weeks after peak fall colors your vitamin D level is about half what it was at the end of summer. For me hear in Michigan (42° N) that is about Christmas time or New Year’s. For those of you who live in the southern part of the United States or below 35° N your vitamin D may never fall by half because your winter is not 10 weeks long. The only sources of vitamin D during winter are fat stores and supplements.
Mother Nature intended for us to burn most of our fat stores over the winter due to less food availability. Our Western lifestyles have us typically eating more food through the end of year holidays. So rather than liberating stored vitamin D by burning fat, we are increasing fat volume and retaining vitamin D in fat. If there were ever an appropriate use of fasting it would be from Thanksgiving through Easter. We should eat less in these winter months not more.
Moderate to intense physical activity also stimulates fat burning and will liberate vitamin D from fat stores. Maintaining a routine of this type of activity has been shown in CDC data to translate into significantly higher vitamin D levels. So follow the diet in the Vitamin D Cure year round and establish a daily routine of moderate physical activity.
Remember low vitamin D levels in the winter depress your mood and your immune system. So beat those winter blues and stop all those flu viruses with the Vitamin D Cure.
Recipe of the Month
Remember our recipes are courtesy of Chef Kelly (firstname.lastname@example.org). If you have recipes you would like to share or convert to follow the rules of The Vitamin D Cure send them to email@example.com .
Broiled Spiced Salmon with Roasted Winter Squash & Fennel
For the vegetables:
• 1-1 ½ pound butternut squash, peeled, halved lengthwise, seeded, halved crosswise, then cut lengthwise into 3/4-inch-wide wedges
• 1 fennel bulb, trimmed, cut lengthwise into 1-inch-wide wedges
• 1 large onion, root end left intact, then cut lengthwise into 1/2-inch-wide wedges
• 3 tablespoons olive oil
• 1 teaspoon ground cumin
• 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 1 teaspoon chili powder
• 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
For the Salmon:
• 4 Salmon fillets (4-6 oz. each)
• 1 Tbsp. reserved spice mixture from vegetables
• Salt & Pepper
• Olive oil
1. Position rack in bottom third of oven and preheat to 450°F.
2. Combine squash, fennel, and onion on heavy large rimmed baking sheet. Add oil and toss to coat. Mix all spices in small bowl to blend, reserve 1 Tbsp. for Salmon. Sprinkle spice mixture over vegetables and toss to coat. Sprinkle with salt and generous amount of pepper.
3. Roast until vegetables are tender and browned, turning once, about 45 minutes. Turn oven to broil.
4. For the salmon, foil line and spray a broil pan with nonstick spray.
5. Place salmon fillets on pan and drizzle with oil, season with salt and pepper and evenly sprinkle 4 fillets with reserved spice mixture.
6. Broil for 5 to 7 minutes or until fish flakes easily.
7. Serve over top roasted vegetables.
Vitamin D in the News
Vitamin D has profound and multiple effects on the immune system. This is particularly true when it comes to your response to infections. We know how it affects our response to tuberculosis. The effects of vitamin D on our response to viruses like the flu are a bit less clear. Here is an excellent review of the data that is our there.
Vitamin D for treatment and prevention of infectious diseases: a systematic review of randomized controlled trials. Endocr Pract. 2009 Jul-Aug;15(5):438-49.
Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia 30030, USA.
OBJECTIVE: To review the existing human controlled intervention studies of vitamin D as adjunctive therapy in settings of infection and provide recommendations for design and implementation of future studies in this field on the basis of the evidence reviewed. METHODS: We conducted a systematic review of randomized controlled clinical trials that studied vitamin D for treatment or prevention of infectious diseases in humans. Studies from 1948 through 2009 were identified through search terms in PubMed and Ovid MEDLINE. RESULTS: Thirteen published controlled trials were identified by our search criteria. Ten trials were placebo controlled, and 9 of the 10 were conducted in a rigorous double-blind design. The selected clinical trials demonstrated substantial heterogeneity in baseline patient demographics, sample size, and vitamin D intervention strategies. Serious adverse events attributable to vitamin D supplementation were rare across all studies. On the basis of studies reviewed to date, the strongest evidence supports further research into adjunctive vitamin D therapy for tuberculosis, influenza, and viral upper respiratory tract illnesses. In the selected studies, certain aspects of study design are highlighted to help guide future clinical research in the field. CONCLUSION: More rigorously designed clinical trials are needed for further evaluation of the relationship between vitamin D status and the immune response to infection as well as for delineation of necessary changes in clinical practice and medical care of patients with
Vitamin D deficiency in infectious disease settings.
Vitamin D Success Story
Please share your successes at firstname.lastname@example.org or online at Amazon. Your success story has a powerful impact on motivating others to change their lifestyle.
I am a Registered Nurse working in the City of London. As I live in rural Essex, I commute daily in to London. Reading my newspaper on the train a few weeks ago I came across an article on Vit. D. This seemed interesting so I ordered Dr. Dowd’s book.
On reading this book I realized that I ticked all the boxes of symptoms being Vitamin D deficient. I have weak muscles/aches/not much strength, and always struggle when I went to a Gym. I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia around 10 years ago, which settled but I always feel fatigued etc… I lead a very busy life working full time in London as a Registered Nurse. You wouldn’t know that I have discomfort as I just get on with it.
A colleague took some blood and my level of Vit. D was 31 nmol/L range from out lab is 75 – 200 nmol/L. Magnesium level is 0.84 range from our lab is 0.65 – 1.05. I put myself on ‘Life Extention’ 1000iu x 2 daily from Victoria Health and Magnesium. I am trying to change my diet which was mostly vegetarian.
By the way I am Scottish….so not much sun in my life when I was growing up. I am going to keep to this regime and will let you know the outcome. So glad I came across the article and the book which will be useful for my colleagues and patients. I have ordered a couple of copies of the book to give to a couple of my doctor colleagues.