The Vitamin That May Help You Slim Down

What vitamin may help you slim down?

Answer: Vitamin D*.

Why the asterisk? Because there's a caveat.

Vitamin D isn't really a vitamin. In its active form, it's actually considered a hormone. Our bodies can make it from sunlight. Its primary function is to help the body absorb calcium and phosphorous, which the body needs to build and maintain strong bones.

Vitamin D has also been shown to affect our biorhythms, moods and behavior. Spend a few days in a cloudy environment and watch how your mood changes. Sunlight, and thus vitamin D, lifts the spirit, strengthens the body and enhances our moods. A dose of sunshine is truly a body, mind and spirit boost.

More: Are You Getting Enough Vitamin D?

How Vitamin D Helps Us Slim Down and Maintain Your Weight

To be clear, vitamin D isn't a magic bullet. To lose and maintain your weight, you must eat a healthy diet and exercise. But if you also add foods rich in vitamin D to your diet, you might get an extra boost.

Here's how it works: Vitamin D helps receptors in your brain keep hunger and cravings in check, as well as boost levels of the mood-elevating chemical serotonin. Vitamin D also helps the body absorb calcium. When the body lacks calcium, it may experience up to a fivefold increase in the fatty acid synthase. This enzyme converts calories into fat.

More: Healthy Ways to Handle Food Cravings

A study published in the British Journal of Nutrition, reported that obese women given 1,200 milligrams of calcium a day lost six times more weight than women who dieted alone. By fueling your body with vitamin D, you absorb more calcium, kick-start the fat burning process, and could potentially lose more weight. Additionally, it helps protect your body from harmful cancer cells.

More: Vitamin D Lowers Cancer Risk

  • 1
  • of
  • 2
NEXT

About the Author

Lynn A. Anderson, Ph.D, ND

Doctor Lynn holds a Ph.D in Natural Health and a Doctorate in Naturopathy with an emphasis in Aromatherapy. She is also an ACE certified trainer and yoga instructor. Her new DVD, Aero*boga—The Way of the Heart, is a combination of Yoga and Dance that she developed to heal herself from cancer. She has written numerous courses in the area of mind-body-spirit integration, natural health and its application to traditional health and fitness practices. She has been featured in Shape, SELF, Natural Health, Redbook, and Fit Sugar, among other national media outlets. Visit Doctor Lynn, and save 20 percent on any purchase with this coupon code: doctorlynn. Follow doctor Lynn on Facebook.

Doctor Lynn holds a Ph.D in Natural Health and a Doctorate in Naturopathy with an emphasis in Aromatherapy. She is also an ACE certified trainer and yoga instructor. Her new DVD, Aero*boga—The Way of the Heart, is a combination of Yoga and Dance that she developed to heal herself from cancer. She has written numerous courses in the area of mind-body-spirit integration, natural health and its application to traditional health and fitness practices. She has been featured in Shape, SELF, Natural Health, Redbook, and Fit Sugar, among other national media outlets. Visit Doctor Lynn, and save 20 percent on any purchase with this coupon code: doctorlynn. Follow doctor Lynn on Facebook.

Discuss This Article