As Brits we are all guilty of complaining about the grey skies and drizzly weather. But maybe we really do have a reason to be grumpy about it.
LIVE! caught up with Frankie @fjsfit to find out more about why the British weather could be affecting our body.
Frankie a final year medic at Birmingham University & fitness influencer unleashes her inner scientist in this article to help you beat the winter blues.
“Typical English Weather”
by Frankie Jackson-Spence
The sun emits UV Rays which don’t just give you that summer glow*, but more importantly, act on chemicals in your skin and produce a hormone called Vitamin D.
Vitamin D isn’t like the other vitamins you get from your fruit and veg, it acts more as a hormone in your body controlling lots of different functions including keeping your immune system functioning, keeping your bones strong and your energy levels high.
A recent study showed that 50% of people in the UK are deficient in vitamin D are deficient, getting less than half the recommended dose of vitamin D a day. Small amounts of vitamin D can be obtained from food, but most of our vitamin D comes from sunlight… which we don’t get enough of, especially with those winter nights looming when some of us leave the house when its dark and quite literally don’t see daylight! People with darker skin tones are even more at risk of vitamin d deficiency. It is also drilled into us that we must wear sunscreen every day to prevent skin ageing and skin cancer, and whilst I fully support that, advice taken too literally can result in other health issues. 20 minutes a day of sunlight would be enough to top up your vitamin D supplies and keep you healthy and more energised.
Signs you might be deficient in vitamin D:
- Feeling tired all the time
- Frequent colds and infections
- Achy weak muscles
- Frequently broken bones
TOP TIPS to increase your vitamin D exposure:
- Spend some time outdoors – take your workout outside, swap your spin class for a run, get out of the office and go for a walk on your lunch break, park further away and get some more steps outside into your day
- Eat food sources rich in vitamin D such as oily fish, egg yolks and meat, dairy products, some fruits and fortified breakfast cereals
- Vitamin D supplements – you can buy these from your local health shop or go to the GP and have them prescribed there*
- Book yourself a sunny holiday – you can justify that trip to Spain because it really is good for you*
- Show some skin! Throw on your favourite LIVE! bikini or train outdoors in a sports bra to get your skin making some vitamin D!
I hope you’ve all enjoyed this little science lesson! I would recommend going to see your GP if you think you are affected by lack of vitamin D because a simple supplement could see your mood, energy levels, workouts and general health improve!
Lots of Love
- It is recommended to go and see your doctor before starting supplementation.
- The use of SPF is recommended to prevent skin cancer associated with excessive UV exposure, avoid midday sunlight. Do not let yourself get sunburnt. I am not ever recommending the use of sunbeds.