Vitamin D Supplements and Bodybuilding: The Essentials
Vitamin D plays a vital role in everyone’s body, including athletes. Every person needs sufficient amounts of Vitamin D to attain optimal health and wellness. It is essential for having a strong immune system, preventing inflammation, and for optimizing muscle growth. Therefore, all athletes – including bodybuilders, should include a source of Vitamin D in their daily supplement regime.
Your Immune System Needs Vitamin D
A well-tuned immune system is important for fitness athletes. When an athlete’s immune system is in top form, they’re less likely to experience training delays due to illness and injury. To drive your fitness goals forward, maintaining a robust immune system is key. And, Vitamin D is essential to maintain an immune system that can support your bodybuilding training strategy.
Improved Immune Response
When healthy amounts of Vitamin D are present in the body, it’s easier for the body to fight off foreign disease and illness. For example, bacteria, viruses, and environmental pollutants are common contaminants we are exposed to every day that often lead to becoming sick or unwell.
Athletes in training can fight off disease-causing invaders more easily by supplementing their diet with Vitamin D. And, benefits of having a well-supported immune system include fewer missed workouts, faster recovery times, and a healthier lifestyle.
What is Inflammation?
Inflammation is our body’s natural response to illness, injury and disease. Visible signs of inflammation include redness around a wound, swelling of hurt tissue, and heat radiating from an injured area. However, not all inflammation in the body is visible or helpful. And, if inflammation persists for an extended time, adverse health effects can result.
Signs of persistent or chronic inflammation can be pain, swelling, and generally poor health conditions. Common ailments caused by chronic inflammation include:
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Heart Disease
Vitamin D Combats Inflammation
Recent studies have shown that Vitamin D plays an important role in how the immune system responds to chronic inflammation. Chronic inflammation can also result from regular, strenuous exercise; this means bodybuilding athletes can be at risk. By supplementing with Vitamin D, athletes can lower levels of harmful inflammation.
The Body Cannot Produce Vitamin D
Like most essential vitamins and minerals, we can only obtain them from outside sources, such as healthy food choices. However, Vitamin D is a rather unique essential element. It can only be produced in the body by direct sunlight.
Also dubbed “the sunshine vitamin,” Vitamin D is made from cholesterol present on your skin upon exposure to natural sunlight. When exposure to sunlight is not accessible, such as in northern climates, it’s easy for our bodies to become Vitamin D deficient. In fact, it’s estimated that more than 40% of North Americans have low Vitamin D levels.
When natural sunlight is sparse, it’s a good idea to get your dose of sunshine from healthy food sources, fortified foods, and supplements.
Natural Sources of Vitamin D
Natural sources of Vitamin D can be found in many healthy, tasty and fresh foods. Consider any of the following foods to increase your levels of the sunshine vitamin:
- Mushrooms, white
- Sockeye Salmon
- Cod liver Oil
- Egg yolk
- Sunflower seeds
Many foods are fortified with extra nutrients. When consuming any of the following foods, you’re getting some of the Vitamin D that your body needs to stay healthy.
- Milk, cow’s milk
- Almond milk
- Soy milk
- Oat milk
- Cheddar cheese
- Ready-to-eat cereals.
When natural food sources of Vitamin D conflict with your diet plan, consider taking a supplement from a trusted health supplement supplier. For example, suppose you’re vegan or a bodybuilder in the cutting phase of your training program. In that case, many foods containing Vitamin D won’t be an option.
Choosing a fortified supplement that works with your dietary needs and training goals can be done easily with the help of nutritional supplement experts.
Helps Build Muscle
When building muscle is your training goal, Vitamin D is one of the micronutrients that can be relied on for getting results. When an individual doesn’t have enough, the ability to build muscle mass is believed to be reduced. When maximizing the building of muscle strength and mass, it’s essential to consume enough vitamin D.
Increases Testosterone Levels
Testosterone is a natural steroid that affects many physiological functions, including muscle mass, sex drive, and some cognitive functions. When training for a bodybuilding competition or physique challenge, testosterone levels need to be healthy.
In a recent study, increasing consumption of foods rich in vitamin D, supplements, and natural sunlight exposure was linked to increased testosterone levels in men. Low levels of testosterone have been scientifically linked to lower levels of the important vitamin.
Find Vitamin D Supplements at Fuel Victoria
Bodybuilding athletes tend to overlook adding essential vitamins and minerals to their supplement routine. And it’s no wonder why – multivitamins are often viewed as something only for the elderly or those with compromised health conditions. However, all vitamins and minerals are just as crucial for bodybuilders as the general population.
In the Greater Victoria Area, essential nutritional supplements are available at Fuel Victoria. With three storefront locations to serve you, plus our online shop, you’re guaranteed to find the right fuel for your athletic and health needs.