By Sara Novak, Planet Green
It’s been one of the worst winters that I can remember. In fact, last week my native Columbia, S.C. got 4 inches of snow. For the rest of the country that may seem minimal, but for Southerners that have never seen snow in their lives, it was memorable. But even when it hasn’t snowed, the weather has been gloomy at best. The sun has rarely shown us its gorgeous face and when it has, the shine has been short lived.
According to an article in US News, in the winter, it’s impossible to produce Vitamin D from the sun if you live north of Atlanta because the sun never gets high enough in the sky for its ultraviolet B rays to penetrate the atmosphere.
Vitamin D is critical to a healthy functioning body because deficiencies are linked to a host of chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, osteoporosis, breast cancer, colon cancer, and ovarian cancer. While this is sort of scary stuff, it can be prevented by including certain foods in your diet.
Eco-Conscious Foods With Vitamin D
Cow’s milk is often fortified with Vitamin D, but if you don’t drink cow’s milk, soy milk is often fortified as well. It’s always best to choose local and sustainable dairy. Look for organic soy milk because much of the soy produced in this county isn’t organic but rather, comes from a genetically modified seed produced mainly by Monsanto. Salmon and eggs are also sources of Vitamin D. According to the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch Program, the most sustainable choices when it comes to salmon are wild coho, sockeye, king, pink, red, and sake salmon caught in Alaska and Washington. When choosing sustainable eggs, consult Planet Green’s Guide to Humanely Raised Eggs. Then make these simple and delicious recipes stacked with the nutrient.
Next: Recipes loaded with vitamin D
Recipes Loaded With Vitamin D
1. Emeril’s Poached Salmon with Herbed Tomato-Caper Vinaigrette
A 3 oz serving of salmon has 102 percent of your daily allowance of Vitamin D. It’s one of the best sources that you can find. If you’re looking for a truly healthy recipe, try Emeril’s Poached Salmon with Herbed Tomato-Caper Vinaigrette. Emeril adds intense flavors to the salmon by poaching it in shrimp stock. The high quality salmon is topped with a flavorful vinaigrette to make it truly mouth watering. Poaching is an extremely healthy way to prepare the nutrient-dense fish.
2. The Uplifting Soy Milk Smoothie
Soy milk is often fortified with Vitamin D and a 1 cup serving, has about 35 percent of your daily allowance. Additionally, the bananas in this recipe are known to help the body manufacture serotonin, a naturally occurring relaxant giving you that uplifting feeling. I also used a fair trade cocoa powder and local raw honey for this.Stress Reducing Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie
2 organic bananas
1 tbsp organic creamy peanut butter
1 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tbsp local raw honey (for a vegan version, try substituting Agave Nectar)
6 oz organic vanilla soy milk
4 cubes ice
Blend until smooth and combined. Enjoy.
3. Kelly Rossiter’s Indian-Style Scrambled Eggs
While eggs are much cheaper and great for vegetarians, you’ll need to eat more eggs to get enough of the nutrient. Two eggs has about 11 percent of your daily allowance. Combine that with 1/4 cup soy milk and you’ll up it to about 20 percent. The yoke is home to an egg’s Vitamin D, so eating just egg whites will do you no good. Kelly said that she got the recipe for the Indian spiced version of scrambled eggs on one of her favorite food Web sites Limes & Lycopene. She finished the dish off by adding in fresh spinach and throwing it all on a flour tortilla.
Also, read this article to find out about certain kinds of mushrooms that can offer 100 percent of our Vitamin D needs.