Significantly referred to as the sunshine vitamin for diabetes management because of the source from which it is derived as well as the role it plays in human body – revitalizing organs and the functions performed by them – vitamin D is the key nutrient which determines your overall health, especially in case of diabetes management like diabetes type 2. Let us take a look at the key contributions of vitamin D in human body as well as in management of diabetes:
Role of Vitamin D in Your Body Functions
• Healthy bones and teeth
• Healthy nervous and immune system
• Regulating insulin and diabetes management
• Supporting lung and heart function
• Influencing cancer-causing genes
Extensive national and international studies conducted on the role of vitamin D in human body have revealed a deficiency of this vitamin consequently increases your risk of developing diabetes, particularly type 2 diabetes, by five times. This simply means vitamin D plays a great role in helping to control diabetes.
Foods Rich in Vitamin D to Prevent Deficiency
Planning to keep healthy to prevent diabetes starts with maintaining normal range blood sugar and taking a diet rich in vitamin D. The following key food items can help you to a great extent, especially if you have type 2 diabetes:
1. Fish: Oily fish species like mackerel, tuna, and salmon have high vitamin D content and even a small quantity of either of these can contribute as much as 91% of your daily requirements. Being rich in omega 3, proteins and calcium, fish is also great for your overall well-being.
2. Mushrooms: A lesser known but great source of vitamin D, mushrooms are the only plant source for proteins. Since these grow in presence of sunlight alone, they absorb and store a large quantity of vitamin D. a single cup of mushrooms can contribute to 64% of your daily requirement of vitamin D.
3. Whole Milk: Different milk variants are especially fortified with vitamin D, which also makes for a complete meal in itself. Gulp down a glass or two of whole milk regularly and you will take care of 21% of daily need of vitamin D.
4. Soy Foods Like Tofu: While every variety of soy food has its own characteristics and level of vitamin D which can be identified from their labels, as little as 100gm of tofu can give you 39% of vitamin D. Being rich in proteins too, this serves as the perfect food items for diabetics.
5. Cod Liver Oil: Being the richest and most conveniently available source of vitamin D, cod liver oil is obtained from the liver of codfish and acts as a supplement rather than a part of diet.
6. Oysters: This type of sea food is not only low in calories but is also high in all essential nutrients like copper, vitamin B12 and zinc. Mere 100 grams of oysters contain 68 calories and 320UI of vitamin D.
In order to assess the real impact of vitamin D deficiency among diabetics, it is important to closely monitor their blood sugar levels using a glucometer before and after introducing a vitamin D enhanced diet. The level of blood sugar can be better tracked and analysed under expert guidance with the help of diabetes management app. This blood sugar test reveals how well your diet and lifestyle changes are contributing to diabetes care plan.