Vitamin D is a tricky, but crucial, vitamin. It's a key nutrient for bone health, and it can help you steer clear of osteoporosis and bone thinning. However, it's hard to get in your diet.
If you sit in the sun for a few minutes each day, your body will make vitamin D, but that can be tough depending on where you live, the season, whether you're wearing sunscreen, and your natural skin pigment (darker skin needs more sun to make vitamin D).
You can get vitamin D in your diet, but few foods contain it naturally. Here are a few that can boost your intake.
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Salmon is one of several fatty fish that contains vitamin D. Some types of salmon have more than others, but 3 ounces of sockeye salmon contains 450 international units (IU) of vitamin D, according to the National Institutes of Health.
If you use sockeye in this recipe, each serving will give you about 900 IU of the bone-protecting vitamin.
That puts you above the recommended daily intake (600 IU after age 1 and 800 IU after age 70), but still far below the upper safe limit (4,000 IU for everyone aged 9 or older).
To get vitamin D from an egg, you have to eat its yolk. Each egg yolk provides about 40 IU of vitamin D, about 7% of the recommended dietary allowance of 600 IU.
Although eggs don't have that much vitamin D, every bit helps. If you opt for a vitamin D–fortified cereal, instead of eggs, for breakfast, you get roughly 40 IU of vitamin D (100 if you add half a cup of fortified milk).
Parfaits like these yogurt berry cups are easy to prepare and delicious to eat.
Just make sure you use vitamin D–fortified yogurt when putting them together. You can also use Greek yogurt, as long as the label says it's fortified. Chobani's Champions Greek yogurt (aimed at children) contains 80 IU in each 3.5-ounce serving.
Canned tuna is easy to store and has a long shelf life, so it's no surprise that it ranks pretty high in convenience as a natural vitamin D source. To get more vitamin D, use canned light tuna rather than albacore, which is sometimes called canned white tuna.
This recipe serves one person, so you will get about 150 IU of vitamin D from its 3 ounces of tuna.