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Thread: How can you get vitamin D from the sun?

  1. #1
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    How can you get vitamin D from the sun?

    Sunlight does not contain any vitamin D -- or anything else -- right?

    Is it like some kind of photosynthesis?

  2. #2
    leave no stone unturned seniorita's Avatar
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    lol, that was a nice break from TEB fever

    Vitamin D is a prohormone, meaning that it has no hormone activity itself, but is converted to the active hormone 1,25-D through a tightly regulated synthesis mechanism. Production of vitamin D in nature always appears to require the presence of some UV light; even vitamin D in foodstuffs is ultimately derived from organisms, from mushrooms to animals, which are not able to synthesize it except through the action of sunlight at some point in the synthetic chain. For example, fish contain vitamin D only because they ultimately exist on calories from ocean algae which synthesize vitamin D in shallow waters from the action of solar UV.

    Dont ask me for explanations, I just got curious from question and read it on wiki
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vitamin_D

  3. #3
    and... World Peace! Tonichelle's Avatar
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    I think someone needs to grab Medusa and get her in here.

  4. #4
    can't come down to Earth prettykeys's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    Sunlight does not contain any vitamin D -- or anything else -- right?

    Is it like some kind of photosynthesis?
    The term "vitamin" is usually applied to something we cannot create and have to get out of our food, so "vitamin D" is actually a bit of a misnomer. As someone else replied (and you can look it up on Wikipedia ), our skin synthesizes vitamin D as ultraviolet light converts prohormone substances (derived from cholesterol) into various forms that are shuttled to other parts of the body that Wikipedia will happily tell you about (such as the kidneys.) It is LIKE photosynthesis, although that term is usually applied to light-dependent carbohydrate production. So I'd rather call it "photo-metabolism" or "photo-conversion".

    Plants and fungi produce only D2; the active animal form is D3.

    Apparently you can get a lot of vitamin D2 from eating sun-dried plant foods like sundried tomatoes and sundried mushrooms. Your body can convert D2 into D3, and in fact, eating D2 may decrease the chance of an excess D3 toxicity. Getting vitamin D from sunlight is also impossible to "overdose" on because the skin has "depot" forms of the vitamin, and eventually the unneeded vitamin D can just be shed off.

  5. #5
    ~ Figure Skating Is My Passion ~ Ladskater's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    Sunlight does not contain any vitamin D -- or anything else -- right?

    Is it like some kind of photosynthesis?
    We don't have to worry too much about getting too much Vitamin D from the sun here on the soggy West Coast, although this summer and fall were the sunniest on record in years. We usually don't get enough so have to purchase the pill form!! Some of the braver types hit the tanning salons!!


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