Uncovering the Most Common Vitamin D Myth

“I get my vitamin D from the sun. So I don’t need to take vitamin D supplements.”

There is a common misconception that you can get enough vitamin D from the sun. Well, I am here to set the record straight!

Me: “Hear ye, hear ye. I do declare that you cannot get enough vitamin D from the sun unless it is summer…and I mean REAL summer – July and August!”

Okay, okay. I’ll be serious now.

You absolutely need take vitamin D supplements from the first day of fall to the last day of spring (or roughly Oct. 1st – July 1st). Just because the weather warms up does NOT mean the sunshine is strong enough for you to produce enough vitamin D.

Even if you spent the winter in Florida you STILL wouldn’t get enough vitamin D from the sun. Why? It has to do with the ANGLE of the sun relative to the earth, and the DISTANCE of the earth from the sun. The rays of the sun are just NOT strong enough for us until it is REAL summertime.

So, once it IS summertime, how DO you make sure you are getting enough vitamin D?

Use these tips:

First off, you cannot use sunscreen…this will ALWAYS block your production of vitamin D because the sun rays cannot penetrate the skin. So, get your sun FIRST (keep reading…I will tell you how), then slap on the sunscreen SECOND.

How can you make sure you are getting adequate sun?

You need to be out MID-DAY when the sun is at its strongest. An easy trick for this is to use the length of your shadow.

If you are casting a long shadow (longer than you are tall), then the sun is too low in the sky and you cannot make enough vitamin D no matter how hard you try.

If you are casting a short shadow (shorter than you are tall), this is the perfect time to make plenty of vitamin D and it only takes about 15-20 minutes to do so! This next point may seem obvious, but I am going to mention it anyways – this rule does not apply when the sky is cloudy and overcast and you can barely see your shadow!

Let’s talk skin exposure next. You have to have plenty of skin exposed. At least HALF of your skin exposed. Think shorts and a tank top. Or bathing suit. Just having your face, forearms and hands exposed is NOT enough.

Now think about what I have just said.

What do YOU usually do during the summertime? Do you work 9-5? Do you eat your lunch outside or inside? Even if you do eat outside do you have enough skin exposed? Are you dressed in typical work attire with only your face, forearms and hands seeing the light of day?

If you are like the typical person, you are either eating indoors in a restaurant or cafeteria, or eating at your desk through your lunch, or are dressed professionally and cannot expose half your skin when you are outside.

So, for the average person working a 9-5 job Monday-Friday, you will need to take your vitamin D supplements year round unless your job is a lifeguard or roofer or landscaper or something outdoors.

Now, on the weekends when you CAN get good sun exposure, then by all means skip the vitamin D pills and go for the sunshine! Remember, all it takes is 15-20 minutes!!

Make a promise to yourself starting today:

Stop feeling lousy…rotten…awful…crummy…miserable…terrible…crappy.

Find a good Functional Medicine doctor to help you get to the root cause of your health problems.

Like I always say:

Find the cause.

Fix the cause.

Feel normal again!


Dr. Carri Drzyzga, DC, ND – The Functional Medicine Doc

Find the Cause. Fix the Cause. Feel Normal Again!

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