The term “essential” nutrient means that it is absolutely required for the optimal expression of health in the cells and there must be an external source of that nutrient. In other words, it must be ingested through foods we eat or obtained from the environment.
A great example of this is Vitamin D. It is an essential nutrient that is necessary for proper metabolism of so many things including the health of the immune function, bones, pancreas, breast tissue, prostate, brain, heart, lymphocytes and other tissues. Vitamin D is required for a multitude of physiological functions.
However, we can get Vitamin D in 2 different ways. We can either ingest it or if enough skin is exposed to the sun every day between 10 AM and 2 PM, when you are taller than your shadow, your skin will convert the sunlight to vitamin D.
Our ancestors had no problem naturally making Vitamin D because they spent plenty of time outside. Most in our society don’t. Many of those who do, lather themselves up with so much sunscreen that no natural conversion even takes place.
The research shows that virtually everyone in America is deficient in Vitamin D.
“Large cross-sectional studies found that vitamin D deficiency is common in otherwise apparently healthy adult populations. A surprisingly high number of adolescents are also vitamin D deficient. Very recently, Gordon and her colleagues at Boston Children’s hospital found that 40% of 365 healthy infants and toddlers had vitamin D levels less than 30 ng/mL, and 85% had levels below 40%.”Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 2009
Vitamin D is an essential nutrient and according to the evidence, the majority of us are severely deficient. This is why supplementing is so vital to our health and longevity.
Disclaimer: Straight Chiropractic sells Vitamin D3 but you can buy it wherever you want. It must be accompanied with fat to improve absorption. That’s why our formula is housed in MCT oil in order to improve absorbability. I recommend taking it at the same time you take fish oil. 4000-5000 IU per day for life will keep you sufficient in this essential nutrient.