What vitamin do you get from the sun? | Exercise.com Learn: Your Fitness Business Resource

What vitamin do you get from the sun?

Tyler Spraul is the director of UX and the head trainer for Exercise.com. He has his Bachelor of Science degree in pre-medicine and is an NSCA-certified strength and conditioning specialist. He is a former All-American soccer player and still coaches soccer today. In his free time, he enjoys reading, learning, and living the dad life. He has been featured in Shape, Healthline, HuffPost, Women's...

Full Bio →

Written by

UPDATED: Aug 25, 2020

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about your brand. Let us do the heavy lifting.

Advertiser Disclosure: We strive to help you make confident fitness software decisions. Comparison shopping should be easy. Our partners do not influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

Editorial Guidelines: The Editorial Team at Exercise.com is dedicated to providing fair, unbiased information about the fitness industry. We update our site regularly and all content is reviewed by credentialed fitness experts.

Get the Basics...

  • The only vitamin that you get from the sun is vitamin D.
  • Without vitamin D, your body would not be able to develop healthy strong bones.
  • Vitamin D can be consumed by taking vitamin supplements or from foods.

The only vitamin that you get from the sun is vitamin D.

Vitamin D, which is actually not a vitamin but is a secosteroid, ensures that calcium is properly absorbed within the human body.

Without vitamin D, your body would not be able to develop healthy strong bones.

Although calcium is given full credit for this benefit, the bottom line is that calcium would not be absorbed by your body.

If calcium stopped being absorbed into the body, it would do more than just affect your bones. Other things that would be affected are your muscles, glands, heart, nerves and blood. Calcium aids in the production of energy as well as helping to boost your immune system.

Pair your supplementation routine with a regular exercise routine. Go PRO now for access to workout plans, certified personal trainers, and more.

Is the Sun the Only Place to Get Vitamin D?

No, vitamin D can be consumed by taking vitamin supplements or from foods. Many people are under the misconception that you cannot get vitamin D from foods, but this just isn’t the case.

Most types of food, like eggs, have only trace amounts of vitamin D. It would take a large volume of consumption in order to get your daily requirement of vitamin D.

If you are looking to increase your vitamin D levels through food, you need to know which foods have the highest levels of this important nutrient.

There are is a small group of foods that are high in vitamin D. These include shitake mushrooms, sockeye salmon, herring, tuna, catfish, mackerel and sardines.

The USDA recommends low-fat or skim milk for your vitamin D intake. They are quick to point out that nearly all milk in the United States is fortified with vitamin D.

Which Foods Have the Highest Levels of Vitamin D?

You may not consider this a food, but cod liver oil has the highest levels of vitamin D than any other food substance with a whopping 21,803 IU per serving. A serving size is 218 grams.

It is important to know, however, that cod liver oil has one gram of fat per gram of cod liver oil. In other words, a serving has 218 grams of fat!

Atlantic Herring is the fish with the highest levels of vitamin D. It contains 460 IU per 28 grams of fish and only contains three grams off at per serving. This makes it a much more manageable choice health-wise compared to cod liver oil.

If you are interested in breakfast cereals, you will find that Kellogg’s All-Bran with Fiber has the highest level of vitamin D with 219 IU per 26 grams. Speaking of breakfast, if you include an 8 oz glass of fortified orange juice you will get 259 IU of vitamin D per serving.

Soy products such as tofu and soy milk also have vitamin D. Tofu is very high in vitamin D, but certain brands have more of the D vitamin than others. Nasoya Lite Firm Tofu from Vitasoy has 581 IU of vitamin D per 79 grams of tofu. With only 1 gram of fat per serving, you will find that it is great for those who have their health in mind.

The truth is that there are many other foods, far too many to be listed here, that have vitamin D. A well-balanced diet should allow you to get part of your vitamin D requirement each day.

Get More Out of Your Health and Fitness Routine. Go PRO!

Sign Up

How Much Vitamin D Do I Need?

Both men and women over the age of one, but less than 70 years old, should get 600 IU of vitamin D each day. The assumption is that you are going to get some vitamin D from other sources other than supplementation.

When you take a supplement, you should ensure that you only take the recommended amount. No one can say for sure that they are getting enough vitamin D unless they are spending a fair amount of time each day in the sun.

Before you start a supplement, however, you should go to your doctor and have your levels checked. You don’t want to put yourself in danger of taking too much vitamin D!

Your doctor will be able to tell you if you have enough, too much, or if you need to start taking a vitamin D supplement.

Of course, no supplement routine is complete without being paired with a solid exercise routine. Go PRO today for access to certified personal trainers, workout plans, and more. 

Learn more about Exercise.com Fitness Business Management Software.

Schedule your demo today.