During most of the year, seniors who spend a little time in the sun each day are usually fortunate enough to get a natural dose of vitamin D. However, when winter comes around, they are more likely to stay indoors to avoid the cold weather. Vancouver, BC, elder care professionals want to share a few tips for helping seniors get the vitamin D they need during the winter months.
1. Eat More Seafood
Seniors who are deficient in vitamin D should first take a look at their diets to see if any changes need to be made. Seafood is an excellent source of vitamin D, and fresh fish can easily be found throughout the year. Some of the healthiest seafood choices include oysters, halibut, shrimp, and cod. Wild salmon tops this list with over 988 international units (IU) of vitamin D per serving.
2. Try Light Therapy
Light therapy has become extremely popular in recent years, but seniors should first speak with their doctors to learn more about the pros and cons of this technology. Even though these lights can increase production of vitamin D, they should only be used for a few minutes at a time. The average adult only needs to spend 5 minutes in front of a UV lamp to produce enough vitamin D for the day.
3. Double-Check Supplements
Many of the most popular multivitamins do not contain an ample dose of vitamin D. During the wintertime, it might be beneficial for seniors to take an additional vitamin D supplement so they do not become deficient in this vital nutrient. Adults over age 71 should consume around 800 IU of vitamin D per day to reduce the risk of osteoporosis, cardiovascular disease, and other common medical issues.
4. Get Vitamin D Injections
One of the reasons vitamin D deficiencies are so common is because human digestive tracts have a difficult time processing and absorbing this nutrient. Injections bypass this issue by delivering a concentrated dose of vitamin D directly into the muscles. Another major benefit of these injections is that they are only administered once a month. Seniors might only need 3 or 4 injections to get enough vitamin D for the entire winter.
For more information on senior health and wellness, reach out to Home Care Assistance of Vancouver. Our expertly trained caregivers can prepare nutritious meals, provide timely medication reminders, and assist with a wide array of daily tasks. We also offer specialized Parkinson’s, post-stroke, and dementia care Vancouver families trust. Call 778-279-3634 today to speak with a qualified Case Manager and schedule a complimentary consultation.