Should I take Vitamin D? Yes, it makes a huge difference to your Mental Health
Sunlight is the battery for our biological clocks (our Chronobiology). Our circadian (daily) rhythm is affected by early morning daylight helping us, among other things, to produce melatonin which helps us to sleep when it gets dark. We have special sensors in our eyes that feed back the intensity of light to our brains to regulate our biological, chemical and hormonal levels which impact our immunity, our energy, our alertness and our mood.
Just a few of the other effects… it triggers how we store fat, how much sleep we need, our cortisol levels and how much serotonin we make.
An increase in serotonin has an incredible cascade of benefits for us as it is believed to influence most of our brain cells both directly and indirectly. Studies have found links between serotonin levels and mood, anxiety and happiness, digestion + bowel function, appetite, sleep, bone metabolism, breast milk production, liver regeneration, and cell division so don’t underestimate the impact of having good levels of chemicals in your brain!
With the ultraviolet radiation in sunlight absorbed through our eyes and skin we make vitamin D - which is also a vital ingredient in serotonin production. And it also has a fundamental role in our immune system. Cloudy days, office job, staying in all result in deficient levels of Vitamin D in most of us in the Northern Hemisphere so we all need a little replacement sunshine supplement in our daily ritual to help us keep the doctor away.
Putting some D into your Day
Putting some D into your day is a wonderful benefit for our health, immunity and psychological well-being. So after a long, wet winter the extra hour of daylight and those daily walks are our very best weapon against low mood and disease.
I don’t know about you but I find it so reassuring that our daily walk outside is quietly boosting our immune system and our mental health - without us having to think about it or do anything else. Our bodies and nature are taking care of us.