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While we are hell-bent on maintaining a healthy immune system at a time like this, we might be overlooking an important vitamin deficiency. During the lockdown, one thing most of us are missing more than easy access to alcohol is the sun. If you’re not blessed with a sun-soaked balcony, then here are a few things to try to get your share of Vitamin D.

Salmon 

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Wild salmon is known for containing high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids, but what many don’t know is that they are a great source of vitamin D as well. According to the Boston University team, each serving of wild salmon contains close to half of your vitamin D requirements for the day, making it an easy way to get it into your system.

Egg yolks 

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Egg yolks aren’t the most popular of ingredients. Most people skip them in favour of egg white since they are known to raise levels of “bad” cholesterol. However, this means you will be missing out on the minerals found in them and that includes vitamin D, zinc and selenium, all of which play a role in boosting your immune system. One egg yolk amounts to about 10 per cent of your daily requirement.

Mushrooms 

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Not all mushrooms are full of this vitamin. Farm-grown mushrooms that were harvested indoors have significantly less amount of vitamin D compared those that have been exposed to UV light. Most mushrooms given this extra treatment will be labelled as such, so be sure to keep a lookout when purchasing them at your local supermarket

Sardines

Image: Courtesy Elle Hughes on Unsplash

Apart from being one of the more affordable fish options, sardines are also high in protein, omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, and vitamin D. Two canned sardines are about 12 per cent of your daily vitamin intake, while a piece of fresh sardine amounts to about 10 per cent. 

Supplements

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If you’re concerned that you might not be getting enough vitamin D from your diet, you can always turn to supplements. Vitamin D supplements come in two forms: D2,  harvested from yeast or mushrooms that have been exposed to UV rays, and D3, derived from fish oil or sheep’s wool.

When taken in smaller, daily doses, both have generally the same effect, but if taken in larger amounts, D3 supplements are more effective in improving the vitamin D status in your body. The dosages for the soft gel vary, with most people obtaining the ones with a dosage of 1000iu. As vitamin D is fat-soluble, consuming your soft gel with fatty foods may help increase its rate of absorption. 

Disclaimer: For those with medical conditions or are undertaking medication, please seek advice from your doctor. 

This story first appeared on Lifestyle Asia Singapore. 

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