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Do Low Vitamin D Levels Mean Shorter Life?

Lady Hiking In The Sun

Lady Hiking In The SunLots of studies have shown that Vitamin D is important for your health, and now a new study adds a finality to that: low Vitamin D levels in people age 55 were associated with twice the risk of death from all causes when researchers did a follow up 9 years later.

The upshot is that it’s easy to get more Vitamin D—just spend some time in the sun and take a multivitamin. Both are important—sunlight stimulates the production of Vitamin D, and may even have other benefits, like lowering blood pressure. A multivitamin is important for two reasons: 1) you don’t always get enough sun, 2) as we age, our body doesn’t work as well and needs more help (like a multivitamin).

You can also eat Vitamin D rich foods, like fish. Just take some extra time to carefully source any fish you eat and pick low mercury types (generally, smaller fish have less than bigger fish).

If you go out in the sun for some Vitamin D, be careful to avoid sunburn. 20 minutes full body exposure is the general recommendation, but you should adjust that based on: your skin color, your location (high altitude or nearer the equator means a stronger sun and less time). If you’re going to be out in the sun longer than that, use sunscreen. You could even try a natural one.

You can also kill two birds with one stone, and try some activities that will give you a moderate workout while you’re getting your sun-time like a walk or gardening.

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