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Top 5 Foods for your Vitamin D Needs

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The majority of people are not getting their daily intake of Vitamin D. Without a sufficient supply of Vitamin D, the health of your bones decreases significantly. A Vitamin D deficiency can also increase chronic pain, which can greatly negatively influence your day-to-day life. For those of us who do not like sun or have a difficult time absorbing Vitamin D with supplements, the best way to get our daily intake is through food.

We list the top five food sources for you to get all of your Vitamin D needs.

  1. Fatty Fish – The flesh from fatty fish is the best source of Vitamin D. Salmon, mackarel, and trout are great fatty fish that contain more than enough Vitamin D to get your daily serving in. According to, a 3-ounce salmon fillet contains about 450 international units (IUs) of vitamin D—a good portion of the 600 IUs that is the Institute of Medicine’s recommended dietary allowance (800 IUs if you’re over 70).
  2. Dairy – It’d be difficult not to know how Vitamin D-enriched dairy products are. Milk, cheese, and yogurt all contain large amounts of Vitamin D and calcium, which are essential to maintaining the health of our bones. However, if you can’t digest dairy, don’t worry! Fortified almond milk is becoming a great back up source for Vitamin D consumption.
  3. Egg Yolks – Egg yolks are where the Vitamin D resides in the egg, so it is important to eat the whole egg. One yolk contains about 40 IU, so it is good to add a dose of Vitamin D to recipes. However, due to the cholesterol content in eggs, we would recommend against relying on egg yolks for your primary source of Vitamin D. Dairy and fatty fish are the better and more healthy options for your protein related Vitamin D source.
  4. Mushrooms – Because more mushrooms are being treated with UV light, they are becoming a growing source of Vitamin D. Certain species like the Maitake mushroom, Chantarelle mushroom, and Morel mushroom have over 100 IUs per cup, making them a particularily excellent Vitamin D alternative in meals.
  5. Fortified Orange Juice – Oranges by themselves aren’t the greatest source of Vitamin D. However, according to Madeline R. Vann, MPH, one cup of fortified orange juice can add 137 IU of vitamin D to your daily total of Vitamin D. This number can vary depending on the brand, so check the labels before drinking your morning cup.