Around half of the people in the world do not get enough vitamin D. Despite the importance of this vitamin known as the “sunlight vitamin,” the risk of skin cancer, air pollution, and work schedules often keep people from getting enough time in the sun.
Vitamin D is called the “sunlight vitamin” because it’s absorbed from UVB rays. As most people don’t get enough vitamin D, some doctors recommend older adults take vitamin D supplements or multivitamins that contain vitamin D.
Why is Vitamin D Important?
Vitamin D is the main component of bone strength. One of it’s most important jobs is to help the body absorb calcium to strengthen bones and prevent the loss of bone density. It also prevents rickets and helps certain glands maintain the right balance of calcium in the bloodstream.
When calcium and vitamin D levels are low, the glands send signals to the body to take calcium from the bones. If your parents stick to a diet rich in calcium and vitamin D, their bones stay strong and protect against fractures if they slip, trip, or fall.
In addition to bone strength, calcium is also important to prevent some forms of cancer, help fight infection, and prevent heart disease. If there are worries that your parents don’t get enough calcium and vitamin D, there are things you can do to help.
The Best Ways to Boost Vitamin D
-Take your parents outside at least three days a week. They can get enough vitamin D through around 20 minutes of exposure to the sun each of those days. To prevent damage from the sun that increases the risk of skin cancer, bring them back inside after 20 minutes. Apply sunscreen if they want to go back outside.
-Talk to their doctors about vitamin D supplements. It may be recommended that you add the supplement as a preventative measure. Cod liver oil supplements are high in vitamin D and also add omega-3 fatty acids.
-Diet is often the first choice. Choosing cereals, bread, and juices that are enriched with vitamin D and calcium helps. Vegetables like broccoli contain calcium, too.
Talk to your parents about caregivers. If they have a new daily routine that involves medications, a calcium-rich diet, and time outside, caregivers help with reminders. You can rely on your parents’ caregivers to get them outside and make sure everything on their to-do list is completed each day.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Home Health Care in Valley, AL, please contact the caring staff at Prime Home Health today. Caring for Our Friends and Neighbors in Tallapoosa, Chambers, Lee, Macon and Russell Counties! Call us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week! 334.745.7966