Let a little sunshine into your life and be more like Superman

Let a little sunshine into your life

and be more like Superman

 

Vitamin D and athletic performance

 

When was the last time you got yourself out in the sun? How often do you like to take a stroll outdoors? And when you avoid the sun, do you ever notice your fitness levels diminishing?

 

For many of us, sunshine and the ‘modern-day lifestyle’ don’t go together. With many jobs requiring us to be stuck behind a computer screen, and bad habits encouraging us to be in front of a TV screen, it’s no wonder we’re losing our super powers…

 

Just like Superman… Powered by the Earth’s sun, his heroic capabilities have fascinated us for generations. And although we clearly see the gap between science fiction and reality, a recent study published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology has suggested that us humans might not be too dissimilar to our favourite superhero.

 

 

Discovering a link between vitamin D and fitness

According to Dr Amr Marawan, one of the study’s main contributors: “Our study shows that higher levels of vitamin D are associated with better exercise capacity”.

 

The study specifically looked at cardiorespiratory fitness, which is the ability of the heart and lungs to supply oxygen to the muscles when you exercise. So, all in all, if you have good cardiorespiratory fitness, you’re likely to be much healthier and live longer.

 

Even though you can get it via certain foods and supplements, vitamin D is naturally synthesised by our body when the sunlight hits our skin. Even if it’s a cloudy day… That’s what I call an easy win!

 

 

Are there any other benefits of sun exposure?

Getting just 15 – 20 minutes of sunshine on your face, forearms and hands is enough to boost your vitamin D levels in a big way. Apart from improved cardiovascular capacity and athletic performance, benefits of vitamin D include:

 

  • Healthy bones and teeth
  • Regulation of insulin levels and improved diabetes management

 

  • Stronger immune system, brain and nervous system
  • Reduction in the risk of certain cancers developing

 

And that’s not all… Sunlight exposure boosts your levels of serotonin, a hormone that improves your mood and helps you sleep better at night – Awesome!

 

 

Too much of a good thing – isn’t the sun supposed to be bad for us?

Despite all the benefits to be gained, it’s very important to differentiate between a ‘healthy dose’ of sunshine and prolonged sun exposure that can lead to premature aging of the skin and even cancer.

 

If you’re going to be under the sun for more than a few minutes, remember to slap on the sunscreen and cover up as necessary to avoid burning.

 

While it may not allow you to fly like superman, a healthy vitamin D dose will definitely make you fitter.

 

So, the next time you have a choice between spending some time outdoors and hiding away in front of a screen, just ask yourself how important your fitness is to you.

 

 

Vitamin D is only one of the thousands of ingredients that go into the recipe of making you super healthy like Super Man. If you’re based in sunny Perth, wish to discover the whole picture of what it is to be healthy, and want to optimise your fitness with a personal trainer then give me a shout.

 

Book an appointment today!

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