Nutritionist Madeleine Shaw recommends eating eight vitamin D enriched mushrooms a day to help achieve optimal RDA of the sunshine vitamin.
With the restrictions of the pandemic resulting in ‘little prospect of foreign holidays’ and with much of the nation still spending more time indoors than usual, Brits are at risk of depleted vitamin D levels.
Further to a new survey conducted by Opinion Matters and spanning 2,000 people, The UK & Ireland Mushroom Producers group reports that one in four Brits aren’t getting the recommended daily intake and 13% ‘worry that they will develop a vitamin D deficiency’.
When surveyed, 19% of respondents confirmed they top up this essential vitamin through supplements, with 27% of those admitting they had bought them for the first time, or more frequently than usual, during the pandemic.
A further 9% said they seek out vitamin D enriched food as a natural source – and the humble mushroom, says Shaw, has now joined the ranks of other so-called superfoods such as blueberries and avocados.
A readily available and easily overlooked source are mushrooms, that can be bought specially enriched with vitamin D
“Mushrooms are easily overlooked in the fruit and veg rainbow we’re advised to eat. High in antioxidants, they are commonly overlooked as a significant source of the sunshine vitamin D. As a key vitamin essential in supporting a normal immune system, Vitamin D plays a vital role in keeping our bones healthy, as it works to regulate our intake of calcium, magnesium and phosphorous.
“As we face less hours in the sun this summer due to cancelled holidays and life in lock-down, we need to explore different ways of finding how to best get what our bodies need. A readily available and easily overlooked source are mushrooms, that can be bought specially enriched with vitamin D.”
While eating as few as eight vitamin D enriched mushrooms a day could help a person reach their RDA, 84% said they were unaware this was possible.
“If you can’t get your hands on vitamin D enriched mushrooms and can only find regular mushrooms, here’s a little tip: place them in the window sill on a sunny day and in as little as an hour or two they become a source of vitamin D,” adds Shaw.