Thursday, 21 April 2011

How much Sun for vitamin D?

A question that bothered me for a while. Since I read (and posted) the link to Prevent Sickness, Increase Immunity, where the conclusion was that vitamin D, naturally produced in the body under the influence of sunlight, is the main pillar of the immune system, I kept wondering how much exposure to the sunlight is actually needed in order for the skin to start producing the vitamin D. And how much of it is needed in order to keep the immune system effective.
Well, today I was looking for the answer and found a few good ones. Here is the list:
  • (link)
  • Cancer Council of South Australia (link)
  • My Family Doctor magazine (link)
A general conclusion is that food does not contain enough vitamin D and the only way to get it is to be exposed to the Sun and let the body produce it - this we know from before. As for the time - the fact is that vitamin D gets produced by the body after a few minutes exposure (in Summer) of face, arms, and hands. The total time is about 1-2 hours a week, meaning the exposure periods range from a few minutes at a time to half an hour, spread out over several periods during the week.
A good tip from
In fact, if you live north of the 42-degrees latitude, you will have a difficult time getting enough vitamin D from the sun from November through February.

Also check an article about vitamin D helping prevent tooth decay / caries (link). 


  1. Shashin Patel17 May, 2011 23:42

    this is a very good question as to how much should be the requirement of Vitamin D in our body just to be free from Vitamin D deficiency and to have a healhty body. It has been reported by the doctors that a daily intake of about 400-600 IU of Vitamin D in adults is considered to be healthy. But just in order to get more and more vitamin d some poeple might also make a mistake of getting overdoes of vitamin d. In one article i came across that 'more than 10,000 IU of Vitamin D can have some effect on kidneys and some tissues malfunctioning'. So it is always better to get the adequate amount and not to be overdosed with sunlight or other vitamin d supplements.
    Thank You
    For more details about Vitamin D refer to

  2. That's a good point. From my understanding, the effects of too much vitamin are worse than the effects of vitamin deficiency (in the short term).