The Importance of Vitamin D through the Winter Months

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Well it may not feel too cold yet, but we certainly haven’t been seeing much sun in the past few days. And even if we did, it wouldn’t be strong enough to give us the amount of vitamin D we require each day to remain healthy (this only occurs between 11am-3pm from April to September in the UK).

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that is naturally present in very few foods, which is why we need to get it from ultraviolet rays from sunlight. It is important for promoting calcium absorption and therefore needed for healthy teeth and for bone health – both growth and repair. Without vitamin D bones can become thin or brittle.

Vitamin D can be stored, so getting a winter break can be a very good thing! During periods of sunlight, vitamin D is stored in fat cells and then released when sunlight is gone. Just 6 days of casual sunlight exposure without sunscreen can make up for 49 days of no sunlight exposure!

As mentioned previously, very few foods contain vitamin D – the flesh of fatty fish such as salmon, tuna and mackerel are among the best sources, whilst small amounts are found in beef liver, cheese and egg yolks. So in the absence of a holiday to the sunny side of the world, try this delicious, nutritious recipe instead, and give your Vitamin D levels a well needed boost!

Indonesian Rice and Mackerel

Serves 2

200g basmati rice

1 tbsp Coconoil

1 garlic clove, peeled and finely chopped

2cm piece fresh root ginger, peeled and finely chopped

2 eggs, lightly beaten

4 spring onions, trimmed and chopped

1 red pepper, deseeded and sliced

½ tbsp curry paste of your choice (we used Thai red curry paste)

1 tbsp soy sauce

2 smoked mackerel fillets, flaked

2 tbsp cashew nuts

1-2 tbsp roughly torn coriander leaves

  • Cook the rice according to the pack instructions.
  • Meanwhile, heat half the Coconoil in a wok or large frying pan, and sauté the garlic and ginger for 30 seconds before adding the eggs and scrambling quickly with a spatula. Remove to a plate.
  • Heat the remaining Coconoil and sauté the spring onion and red pepper for 2 minutes.
  • Stir in the curry paste and cook for one minute.
  • Drain the rice and add to the pan along with the soy sauce, egg, mackerel and cashew nuts.
  • Stir in the coriander leaves and serve.

Indonesian rice and mackerel

 

 

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