Earlier this week I was asked to shed some light on a new study about Vitamin D supplementation and weight loss. This was my response: “Think of it like being sick and trying to complete a college paper. Since you’re coughing, sneezing and feeling groggy, the amount of time you spend trying to accomplish the paper will probably take longer than if you we’re to try to complete your paper on a healthy day. Being deficient in a vitamin can have very similar effects. Many people try to lose weight by following a reduced calorie diet but do not see results fast enough causing them to give up or slack off. This study shows that overweight/obese adults who are Vitamin D deficient can benefit by coupling their efforts on a reduced calorie diet with consuming a Vitamin D supplement in order to achieve greater weight loss outcomes regardless of age, sex, or BMI.”
What does this mean? First off, get your blood work checked to see if and what vitamins you are deficient in. Second, if you find that you are deficient then consult with your doctor to get the proper dosing (over dosing can lead to toxicity effects and cause complications). Like most scientific evidence, further research needs to be done to determine a recommended dosage. In the mean time you can prevent or treat vitamin D deficiency by allowing yourself 15 minutes of sun exposure daily and/or eating foods such as fish, mushrooms, and fortified milk throughout the week. Add those foods and sun exposure to a reduced calorie diet and you may find yourself losing weight more efficiently.
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