This week I had dinner with a group of mum friends I’ve known for years (and years).
Because of this, we’re able to get straight into all the nitty gritty and get through about 30 different topics in the space of an hour.
One mum is a goldmine of information when it comes to all things medical and it’s her who is always ensuring we’re all up to date with our blood tests, cholesterol checks, mammograms … you name it.
She was onto us all about our annual blood tests because she had recently discovered that both she and her husband are Vitamin D deficient.
In fact they weren’t just deficient in Vitamin D, they had both tested around 40% of the level at which they should be!
Now to me, that’s scary stuff. Because I would have thought we were out and about in the sunshine enough to have the right levels of Vitamin D. We all live near the beach, we all swim, we all exercise … we all spend a lot of time outdoors.
Why is Vitamin D so important?
If you have the right (or normal) levels of Vitamin D the benefits include a decreased risk of heart disease, type II diabetes, hypertension and colorectal cancer.
Add to that other benefits such as healthy bones and the prevention of rickets and osteoporosis and it becomes even more important to watch.
How do we get Vitamin D into our system?
Traditionally, the best natural source of Vitamin D has been sunlight. The trouble with that though is we all know about the effects of too much sun and …
in protecting ourselves from the sun we have made the Vitamin D deficiency issue more pronounced.
Until recently, health professionals would have advised that there are only small amounts of vitamin D in some foods such as mushrooms, fish and eggs and also pointed to some foods such as margarines and milk that have been fortified with added vitamin D.
Introducing the D factor …
Excitingly, new research with mushrooms has shown that mushrooms exposed to sunlight can naturally generate high levels of vitamin D.
As a result, Australian mushroom farmers have now developed a way to stimulate vitamin D production with just two seconds of pulsed UV light. These specially produced ‘Vitamin D mushrooms’ are now available at major supermarkets throughout Australia.
This is great news for those of us who’d prefer to achieve their nutrient levels via real food (rather than a supplement).
In fact, just three ‘Vitamin D’ mushrooms contain enough vitamin D to meet your daily requirements.
If you can’t find the Vitamin D mushies in your supermarket, standard mushies do give you 20% of your daily D needs. Or to really boost the vitamin D levels, place your regular mushrooms in the direct sun for an hour and you’ll get to your full daily requirement in just 100g of mushrooms.
Making mushrooms work for the whole family.
If your kids are anything like mine, they may get a little picky at times. And those times are usually when I’m trying to include certain vegetables!
I find getting the kids involved in the selection of our mushies at the supermarket helps a lot; we talk about what we’re going to cook with them and then I get them to count the mushies into the paper bag.
I then get them helping in the kitchen with the cooking; they are so much more likely to eat what they have cooked.
There really are endless recipe options when it comes to mushrooms.
Thanks to the team at the Power of Mushrooms, here’s a few you might like to try with your family:
For even more recipe ideas, visit www.powerofmushrooms.com.au
Want to find out more about Mushrooms, Vitamin D and getting enough?