Ask your doctor about the vitamin D test

Studies show a lack of vitamin D could contribute to diseases such as cancer and osteoporosis. A test from your doctor can tell you if you’re getting enough of the sunshine vitamin

Ask your doctor about the vitamin D test

Source: Bes Health Magazine, March/April 2010

The main source of vitamin D is the sun’s rays, so in the darker months of winter and early spring, when we’re not getting as much sunshine, our levels tend to be low. March and November are the best months to ask your healthcare provider about the 25-hydroxy D blood test, says immunologist Aileen Burford-Mason, a founding partner of the Holistic Health Research Foundation of Canada. The test indicates the amount of vitamin D in your blood, and can help your healthcare professional determine the best ways to boost your levels if needed. Vitamin D deficiency has been linked with many cancers.

To make sure you get enough vitamin D all year round, choose from food sources such as tuna and eggs, and top up with a supplement. Health Canada recommends 200 IU (international units) daily for women up to age 50, but other experts say you should really be getting 1,000 IU daily.

Looking to boost your vitamin D? Check out these tips:
The best sources of vitamin D
9 ways to boost your immunity
Vitamin D Smart Smoothie