Cometh the winter, cometh the medical trend reports. If it’s not bird, swine or albatross flu, it is warnings of a super-zombie virus immune to soup. Right now the hottest thing in medical trends since Tahitian tongue tinea is Vitamin D deficiency. Australian’s may live in one the driest, sun drenched clear-skied countries on the face of God’s great green, groaning, gulping, groovy, gothic, gassy, googly earth but that we are told this not enough. It seems the shift from the anti-cancer council message of Summer's “Don’t go out in the Sun” has become so effective that Health authorities have come out with a Winter version “Please, go out in the Sun...its getting kind of weird.” This mixed messaging has left the Australian public in a standstill, confused and pasty white.
What is vitamin D? It’s a hormone that helps your body soak up calcium, ensuring you keep your bones and muscles intact. In the past vitamin D deficiency was the cause of rickets, but now it is more closely linked to sales of fake tan, supplements and the concerns doctors give otherwise healthy people. More concerning is that it has recently been linked to Cancer. This means too much sun is a bad thing, but so is not enough. 'Enough' is classed as 2-3 hours per week of direct exposure onto the skin during the winter months. However, it also appears the vitamin D is a racist little brat, as a bigoted 3-6 hours are recommended for those with darker skin.
Yummy staples like eggs, fish, liver and some milk has been known to boost Vitamin D levels.To counter the risks of deficiency, a focused diet can be enjoyed to optimize vitamin D uptake. Why not enjoy a simple sandwich made of two slices of bread, a piece of liver and 11 crushed fish oil tablets drenched in milk and served with a boiled egg? Most people would rather risk the osteoporosis than submit their taste buds to such punishment.
We have become increasingly paranoid about our VD levels (not that one... it grows without impediment), as testing levels have increased by five times that from original rates 8 years ago. Among those at risk include the elderly, pregnant, the pregnant elderly and shift workers (excluding those employed at 7-11 and other fluorescent lighted environs). Particularly vulnerable is anyone who covers-up for extended periods of time such as ninja’s, superheroes, morph suit enthusiasts and beekeepers.
Let's get real. In this busy, microwave meal, bag-less vacuum, working world we don't have time to sit in parks flaunting our rolled cuffs to the gaze of the solar rays. If you are concerned about your vitamin D levels - go see a doctor. They will be more than happy to give you some pills. Pills that basically give your system the same vitamin D hit you would get from 20 minutes of daily sun exposure. Meaning you no longer have to go outside! But be warned. When next year's winter medical warnings come through, and they link vitamin D supplement pills to an outbreak of Vampire-ism, don't come looking for my blood.