What Fruits Have Vitamin D In It? Vitamin D is an essential nutrient that we need to stay healthy and strong. It is one of 13 essential vitamins but it has a special twist. It can only be found in animal sources. Much like the Vitamin C we are also used to getting from fruits, herbivorous animals like cows, sheep, and goats produce Vitamin D3 from the UV light of the sun that they get from grazing on grass. These days, fortified milk is the most common source of vitamin D for people who consume non-vegan diets. Plant-based diets might lead you to think that getting enough vitamin D would be challenging. Unfortunately, you’ll be surprised by some fruits that have vitamin D in it; and these don’t just have trace amounts either.
What Foods Have Vitamin D?
Quick Health Scoop
- Numerous American adults may have low vitamin D levels because they don’t consume enough vitamin D through diet alone.
- A certain population is more vulnerable to getting low vitamin D levels.
- Few foods naturally contain vitamin D, however fatty fish, egg yolks, mushrooms, and beef liver are among sources.
- Other sources of vitamin D include dietary supplements and 10-15 minutes a day of full sun exposure (without protection, exposing arms, legs, and face).
To combat rickets, a condition that results in softening and thinning of the bones and is caused by vitamin D deficiency, the American government started fortifying cow’s milk as a source of vitamin D in the 1930s. Today, almost all milk in our nation is fortified, with each cup containing roughly 3 micrograms (120 IU) of vitamin D. Almond and soy milk, two popular plant-based milk substitutes, are both fortified.
Even still, 95% of Americans still don’t get enough vitamin D from diet alone decades later. Because nine out of ten Americans don’t get enough vitamin D each day, the 2020–2025 USDA Dietary Guidelines for Americans Committee labeled vitamin D as a “nutrient of public health concern.”
These figures are concerning because vitamin D is essential for your health and wellbeing, supporting the strength of your bones, muscles, and immune system.
Why do so many people’s diets include such low levels of vitamin D?
Sadly, the majority of regularly consumed foods lack vitamin D. Because of this, it is used to fortify foods with vitamin D, such as milk. But some meals do contain it. You might need a refresher course on the best foods to eat that are high in vitamin D if you’re wondering what fruit or vegetable is high in vitamin D.
Continue reading to discover more about the foods and beverages that contain vitamin D.
How Much Vitamin D Do I Need?
If you’re a generally healthy adult, the daily amount of vitamin D you’ll need (measured in international units) depends on your age. The recommended amounts are listed below:
- Birth to 12 months: 10 mcg or 400 IU
- Children 1-13 years: 15 mcg or 600 IU
- Teens 14-18 years: 15 mcg or 600 IU
- Adults 19-70 years: 15 mcg or 600 IU
- Adults 71 years and older: 20 mcg or 800 IU
- Pregnant and breastfeeding women: 15 mcg or 600 IU
However, some people may require higher doses of vitamin D to raise and maintain an adequate level (such as infants who consume breast milk, older adults, those with problems absorbing calcium, and those with darker skin tones). These individuals also have a higher risk of developing low vitamin D levels.
What Foods Have Vitamin D?
The good news: Most people can get adequate amounts of Vitamin D from food, sun exposure, and dietary supplements.
The bad news: If you’re relying exclusively on food for your vitamin D intake, only a few foods naturally contain this key nutrient. While you’ll primarily find vitamin D in fatty fish (a terrific source of omega 3 fatty acids), you’ll also find it in vitamin D-fortified foods (such as milk, breakfast cereal, and orange juice). Here’s a breakdown of specific foods that contain the two forms of vitamin D (vitamin D2 and vitamin D3).
|Food||Portion Size||Vitamin D (IU)|
|Cod liver oil||1 tbsp.||1360|
|Halibut, Greenland, raw||3 oz.||932|
|Rainbow trout, freshwater||3 oz.||645|
|Salmon (various)||3 oz.||383-570|
|Canned tuna (light)||3 oz.||231|
|Egg yolk (dried)||1 oz.||178|
|Canned sardine||3 oz.||164|
|Soy beverage (soy milk), unsweetened||1 cup||119|
|Yogurt, plain (nonfat or low fat)||8 oz.||116|
|Mushrooms, raw (various)||1 cup||114-1110|
|Fortified milk (non-fat)||1 cup||108|
|Almond beverage (almond milk), unsweetened||1 cup||107|
|Fortified milk (low fat)||1 cup||104|
|Rice beverage (rice milk), unsweetened||1 cup||101|
|Kefir, plain (low fat)||1 cup||100|
|Fortified orange juice, 100%||1 cup||100|
|American Cheese, fortified (low fat or fat free)||1.5 oz.||85|
|Beef, variety meats and by-products, liver, cooked, braised||3 oz.||41|
|Fortified cereal (various brands)||1 cup||40-100|
|Cheddar Cheese||1 cup||32|
|Pork, fresh, loin, sirloin (roasts), bone-in, separable lean and fat, cooked, roasted||3 oz.||25|
How Can I Boost My Vitamin D Intake?
It is simple to understand how a lack of this nutrient can happen when you consider the required vitamin D intakes listed above as well as the specific foods that contain vitamin D. This is valid, particularly if you don’t frequently consume fish.
What can you do, then, to increase your consumption of vitamin D? You can start by modifying your diet to include more foods high in vitamin D, including fatty fish, mushrooms, and foods fortified with vitamin D. (such as cereal, milk and orange juice).
Consider taking vitamin D supplements in addition to consuming foods high in vitamin D. You should discuss the precise dosage you require to achieve your nutritional needs with your healthcare professional. While the average adult need 15 mcg (or 600 IU) of vitamin D daily, some may require up to 4,000 IU (100 mcg), depending on their health requirements. For instance, Nature Made supplements are available in a range of dosages for adults, from 1000 IU to 5000 IU, and in different formats (such as softgels, tablets, and gummies).
Recall that vitamin D may also be obtained from the sun; it is known as “the sunshine vitamin.” By basking in the sun without protection for just 10 to 15 minutes each day, you can increase your vitamin D consumption. This exposes your arms, legs, and face to ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation from the sun. A skin protein is changed into vitamin D3 by the sun’s interaction with it (the active form of vitamin D). However, if you plan to spend more than 15 minutes outside owing to worries about skin cancer, you should apply sunscreen to protect your skin.
Top Foods for Calcium and Vitamin D
Top Foods for Calcium and Vitamin D
Your body requires vitamin D and calcium. How much are you getting? A lot of folks don’t.
The greatest approach to increase your calcium intake is through eating. It goes without saying that dairy products like milk, cheese, and yogurt are sources of calcium. Additional foods high in calcium include:
- White beans
- Some fish, like sardines, salmon, perch, and rainbow trout
- Foods that are calcium-fortified, such as some orange juice, oatmeal, and breakfast cereal
Foods that provide vitamin D include:
- Fatty fish, like tuna, mackerel, and salmon
- Foods fortified with vitamin D, like some dairy products, orange juice, soy milk, and cereals
- Beef liver
- Egg yolks
To get vitamin D from food, fish is a good option. Three ounces of cooked salmon has about 570 international units (IU).
How Much Do You Need?
Here’s how much calcium and vitamin D you need every day, according to the Institute of Medicine.
- Children 1-3 years old: 700 milligrams (mg)
- Children 4-8 years old: 1,000 mg
- Children 9-18 years old: 1,300 mg
- Adults 19-50: 1,000 mg
- Women 51 to 70: 1,200 mg
- Men 51 to 70: 1,000 mg
- Women and men 71 and over: 1,200 mg
- Age 1-70: 600 IU
- Age 71 and older: 800 IU
Your doctor may recommend higher levels of calcium and vitamin D, especially if you aren’t getting enough of them or are at risk for osteoporosis.
Get vitamin D from these foods if you want to avoid the summer sun
Do you want to limit your vitamin D consumption but stay out of the sun during the summer? If so, incorporate these six foods high in vitamin D into your daily diet.
Because of the sweltering heat in the summer, nobody enjoys being in the sun. However, avoiding the sun can lead to vitamin D deficiency, which is bad for your general health. So what exactly is the answer? Well, by include these foods high in vitamin D in your diet, you may meet your daily requirements.
Why does your body need vitamin D?
Vitamin D is a crucial mineral that keeps bones, teeth, and muscles healthy by regulating the levels of calcium and phosphate in the body. It is crucial for our bodies’ ability to absorb calcium. Additionally, a shortage of vitamin D leads to bone discomfort in adults and bone abnormalities in youngsters.
How can you keep your vitamin D intake in check?
The best source of vitamin D is exposure to sunlight. However, no one wants to venture outside in the sweltering heat and face the sun directly. “As a result of spending the majority of their time indoors, using sunscreen, or eating a diet low in vitamin D, half of the world’s population does not obtain enough vitamin D.
The greatest alternative for someone who dislikes being outside is to consume foods high in vitamin D, according to Dr. Swathi Reddy (PT), Consultant Physiotherapist, Certified Diet Counselor, and MIAP, Motherhood Hospitals, Bengaluru.
You can get vitamin D from these 6 foods if you want to avoid the summer sun:
1. Fatty fish
Fatty fish like salmon, sardines, oysters, shrimp, and mackerel are the major animal sources of vitamin D. They are not only delicious but also excellent and natural sources of vitamin D. In fact, according to Dr Reddy, the vitamin D present in fatty fish can be easily absorbed by your body as compared to plant-based vitamin D sources.
2. Egg yolk
Egg yolks are other sources of vitamin D which you can consume on a regular basis as it is easy to get. People who don’t enjoy fish can eat whole eggs as they have high levels of vitamin D and are rich sources of protein. Dr Reddy said, “People avoid the yellow part of the egg (yolk) because it has saturated fats which can raise your LDL levels (bad cholesterol) in the blood. In case of any health issues egg yolk has to be taken based on dieticians’ advice. However, a good amount of minerals are found in the yolk.. Therefore, you can enjoy it without any worries.” Need not worry as there are other sources of vitamin D too.
To keep the vitamin D level up in the summer, you can also consume mushrooms. Mushrooms are a must-have source of vitamin D for vegetarians. Wild mushrooms that grow in the natural sunlight have higher vitamin D levels as they synthesize vitamin D like our body does. Commercially grown mushrooms are often grown in darker environments and have a lesser amount of vitamin D in them. However, both can be enjoyed to fulfill the daily amount of vitamin D.
4. Cod liver oil
Cod liver oil contains 75 percent of a person’s recommended daily allowance of vitamin D. It should be your next best food for vitamin D consumption.
In fact, cod liver oil is another popular vitamin D supplement for people who do not like fish and eggs. It is a good source of Omega-3 fatty acids as well which can be helpful in maintaining healthy bones, relieving joint pain, and improving eye health. Unfortunately, cod liver oil is also rich in vitamin A which can be toxic if taken in excess. So consume it in moderation.
The microorganisms they contain are the only distinction between curd and yoghurt. Streptococcus thermophilus, a probiotic bacteria, and lactobacillus, which is beneficial for your overall health, are both present in yogurt. Along with calcium and protein, Greek yogurt also has a considerable level of vitamin D.
Do you need another excuse to eat cheese? In addition, cheese contains significant amounts of calcium, phosphorus, fat, and protein, making it a nutritious source of a number of essential elements. It may naturally contain a significant quantity of vitamin D, which can be quite beneficial in helping you meet your daily needs.
What Are Good Sources of Vitamin D?
You have a variety of options to choose from if you want to get enough vitamin D
The essential factor in keeping strong, healthy bones is calcium, although vitamin D also plays a significant role in bone health.
Without vitamin D, “you can have all the calcium in the world, [but] it doesn’t get absorbed into your bones,” according to Cleveland Clinic family physician Donald Ford, MD. Without vitamin D, calcium from foods like yogurt, cheese, and even veggies like broccoli wouldn’t be absorbed and wouldn’t do anything to maintain the strength of your bones.
A vitamin D deficiency can contribute to a “gradual loss of strength of bones over time,” according to Dr. Ford. Vitamin D can also help prevent osteoporosis, which causes your bones to become brittle.
According to Tania Elliott, MD, an instructor of clinical medicine at NYU Langone, “the Institute of Medicine advises 600-1000 IU of Vitamin D daily to cover 95% of the population’s needs.” (According to the National Institutes of Health [NIH], vitamin D is measured in international units (IU), not kilos or milligrams.)
Fortunately, there are several ways to obtain the suggested daily intake; here are some of them.
Sunlight spurs the body to make vitamin D, but it’s important to remember that exposure to the sun increases the risk of developing skin cancer. A small amount of sunlight during the day can help vitamin D levels.
“If you’re going to get it from the sun, about 20 to 25 minutes of exposure is helpful,” said Stephen Honig, MD, director of the Osteoporosis Center at the Hospital for Joint Diseases in New York City. You’ll also want to ensure that you protect your skin from harmful rays when you get your daily vitamin D intake.
The sun is less likely to provide your daily needs at higher latitudes, in the winter, or if you’re older or have a darker skin tone, according to the NIH. Additionally, light through a window won’t work, though you should still wear sunscreen inside due to exposure to UVA rays.
Fresh Fatty Fish
Diverse fish are excellent sources of vitamin D, according to Dr. Ford. If you want to increase the amount of vitamin D in your diet, Dr. Ford noted that you should specifically go for fattier fish. “The ones we think of as oily [or] fatty] include vitamin D.”
According to the NIH, three ounces of cooked rainbow trout provide 645 IUs of vitamin D, compared to 570 IUs in the same quantity of cooked salmon. Vitamin D is also included in cod liver oil, tuna, and sardines. An Environment International research from February 2021 found that Atlantic mackerel and herring were excellent sources of vitamin D.
Adding more fish to your diet also increases your intake of the heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids.
You can increase your vitamin D intake by eating canned fish in addition to fresh fish. Tuna and sardines canned in oil are excellent sources of vitamin D, according to researchers who published their findings in the Journal of Nutritional Medicine and Diet Care in January 2022.
Generally speaking, canned light tuna contains the greatest vitamin D (about 150 IUs per 4 ounces), followed by canned albacore tuna (around 50 IUs per 4 ounces), and canned sardines (roughly 40 IUs per two sardines).
Additionally, because canned fish typically costs less than fresh fish and has a longer shelf life, it’s simple to stock up on them and have them whenever you like.
Mushrooms can manufacture vitamin D, just like people can.
Unbelievably, Dr. Elliott claimed that UV radiation can be used to treat mushrooms, fortifying them with Vitamin D. According to a Nutrients study from October 2018, mushrooms can produce nutritionally beneficial quantities of vitamin [D2] when exposed to UV light. (Mushrooms are typically grown in dark conditions, thus UV light treatment is required before exposure.)
Nevertheless, some types of mushrooms may be a good source of vitamin D. See if your neighborhood grocery shop carries mushrooms, such as portobello mushrooms, which are high in vitamin D. They are ideal for vegetarians seeking vitamin-rich plant-based diets.
Nearly all varieties of cow’s milk sold in the U.S. are fortified with vitamin D, but dairy products like ice cream and cheese are not, according to the NIH.
An 8-ounce glass of milk typically has 100 IUs of vitamin D in it, whereas a 6-ounce portion of yogurt typically has 80 IUs. However, the amount can vary depending on how much is added.
Check the label because not all soy and rice milks are supplemented with vitamin D; some are fortified with roughly the same quantity.
Some Types of Orange Juice
According to the NIH, you can still acquire vitamin D if you don’t like milk and dairy by drinking fortified orange juice. Although the amount varies from brand to brand, an 8-ounce glass of fortified juice typically contains roughly 100 IUs of vitamin D. Check the label because not all products are fortified.
A convenient source of vitamin D is eggs. They are frequently used in recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert.
Use the entire egg, not just the whites, because the yolk is where an egg gets its vitamin D from. One yolk will give you about 40 IUs, but don’t try to get your daily vitamin D just from eggs.
About 200 mg of cholesterol are included in one egg. A JAMA study published in March 2019 found a link between dietary cholesterol intake, especially cholesterol from eggs, and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.
Choosing a low-calorie cereal that has vitamin D added will help you meet some of your daily requirements. You can drink it with fortified milk or orange juice.
According to the NIH’s food pyramid, a 1-cup (29-gram) serving of the cereal and a half-cup of fortified milk might give about 140 IUs. Your total may reach nearly 200 IUs of vitamin D if you added an 8-ounce glass of orange juice that has been fortified.
According to the NIH, 3.5 ounces of cooked cow liver provide roughly 50 IUs of vitamin D along with other minerals like vitamin A, iron, and protein, despite the fact that it may not be the most appetizing source. However, because beef liver also contains a lot of cholesterol, you might need to eat it in moderation or substitute an oily fish.
Cod Liver Oil
Although its name would imply a less-than-savory flavor, cod liver oil frequently has mint or citrus flavors or is available in capsule form.
The NIH estimates that one tablespoon of food contains roughly 1,300 IUs of vitamin D, more than twice the daily intake of 600 IUs.
That amount exceeds the daily requirement for newborns but falls below the top limit of 4,000 IUs for persons over the age of 8. (1,000 IUs).