If you’re suffering through the winter doldrums, maybe you need a dose of vitamin D. People often get their D from sunshine, but unless you live in Florida, Arizona or Hawaii, vitamin D might be in short supply. And this is one vitamin you shouldn’t skimp on as it delivers a powerful lineup of health benefits. Here are the top 10 :

  1. Vitamin D reduces the risk of Type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is reaching epidemic proportions in the U.S. Some studies suggest that vitamin D can reduce the risk of developing diabetes, with one study finding those with high levels of Vitamin D were 40% less likely of developing diabetes than those with low levels.
  1. Vitamin D reduces cancer risk. There are lessened mortality rates for 15-20 types of cancer in regions of higher solar UVB exposure, particularly for breast, colon and rectal cancer. Patients with higher vitamin D blood levels when diagnosed had nearly twice the survival rate of those with the lowest levels.
  1. Vitamin D supports better bone health. Vitamin D boosts calcium absorption for strong bones, which means you’re less likely to develop bone diseases, fractures and osteoporosis.
  1. Vitamin D protects eye health. Vitamin D has been tentatively linked to lower incidence of cataracts, and studies indicate good D levels correlate to a lower risk of macular degeneration.
  1. Vitamin D boosts immunity. Researchers believe that vitamin D is integral to proper function of the body’s T cell, the immune system’s first line of defense.
  1. Vitamin D improve metabolisms, which helps fight obesity. Several studies show correlation between sun exposure and an increase in metabolism. Of course, when it’s nice outside, we’re more likely to exercise.
  1. Vitamin D lowers blood pressure. The warmth of the sun can improve circulation, and heightened Vitamin D levels have been shown to reduce blood pressure in hypertensive people.
  1. Vitamin D reduces stroke risk. In one survey, people who lived in areas with less sun exposure had a stroke risk that was 60 percent higher than those who lived in sunshine-y regions.
  1. Vitamin D helps us sleep better. Daily time in the sun helps to regulate circadian rhythms for a better night’s sleep.
  1. Vitamin D makes us feel better. Sunshine has been shown time and again to improve mood, fight Seasonal Affective Disorder and lessen stress.

So what’s the best way to get your daily dose of D? If you’re unable to get out in the sun, you can eat foods rich in vitamin D like nutritious Thrive Ice Cream. A six-ounce serving of Thrive – which is the portion typically served by healthcare organizations – contains 40 percent of an adult’s daily requirements. A f of Thrive – about a scoop – contains 20 percent of an adult’s daily requirement. Thrive Ice Cream tastes great and also delivers a bunch of other nutritional benefits. Learn more here.

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