Overweight? Part of the problem may be low vitamin D levels, according to a new study from Los Angeles, California.
In this new research, 90 young women living in sunny southern California had their blood level of vitamin D measured along with their body weight.
Overall, 53 of the 90 women in the study had insufficient concentrations of the vitamin D metabolite 25-hydroxyvitamin D (less than 30 nanograms per milliliter).
Compared with their vitamin D-sufficient peers, women with insufficient vitamin D levels were about 16.3 pounds (7.4 kilograms) heavier.
These findings suggest "obesity is related to vitamin D insufficiency," say the study's author.
Vitamin D, which regulates bone metabolism, is mostly obtained through exposure of the skin to direct sunlight.
Insufficient vitamin D is thought to impact bone health, which in turn may play a role in obesity.
The Canadian Cancer Society recommends 1,000 IU (international units) of vitamin D daily during the fall and winter months - and all year round if you're over 50 or you don't expose your skin to sunlight (without sunscreen) in the summer months.
Supplements are an important source of vitamin D as it's impossible to get the recommended amount from food alone.
To determine the dose of vitamin D you need to take, add up how much you're already getting from your multivitamin and calcium supplements. Choose a vitamin D supplement that contains vitamin D-3, instead of vitamin D-2, which is less potent.
All research on this web site is the property of Leslie Beck Nutrition Consulting Inc. and is protected by copyright. Keep in mind that research on these matters continues daily and is subject to change. The information presented is not intended as a substitute for medical treatment. It is intended to provide ongoing support of your healthy lifestyle practices.