General Advice

Exercise, vitamin D and mood

Are you feeling fatigued and over worked, are you waking up in the morning wishing you
had another 3 hours to sleep? Are your energy levels dropping?

Coming out of winter we find we have been hibernating, not getting enough sun, and potentially
reducing our exercise/ movement, which can result in reduced vitamin D levels, motivation
and fitness levels. Vitamin D is an important fat-soluble vitamin supporting skin
pigmentation and bone health, it supports bone health by helping calcium absorb into
bones. Coming into summer is the perfect time to get some much needed vitamin D.


What is a fat soluble vitamin?
Fat soluble vitamins are a type of vitamin that are absorbed in the intestines by fat, so
consuming these vitamins with fat such as walnuts, avocados, good quality olive oil or fatty
fish such as salmon or mackerel will help the body absorb vitamin D. Once absorbed it is
stored in fatty tissue and the liver until the body uses it.


How can I get more vitamin D?
We get most of our vitamin D from the sun but there are a handful of foods which naturally
contain vitamin D. These foods include eggs, fatty fish (especially salmon) and mushrooms.
To achieve the recommended daily intake of vitamin D consuming eggs throughout the
week, 1 or 2 servings of salmon per week or various types of mushrooms. 100g of cooked
mushrooms will provide the recommended daily intake of vitamin D. Mushrooms are like
humans in the way they can absorb vitamin D from the sun. So, before eating mushrooms
leave them in the sun for 15 minutes to increase their vitamin D levels.


Reducing fatigue through exercise
In our colder winter months exercise is so important for us, it will increase mood and give us
a more positive mindset. Improved mood is high on the long list of amazing benefits from
exercise, along with getting more sun and vitamin D. Exercising can be categorised as light,
moderate or vigorous and the Australian recommendation for adults are listed below. If
these recommendations are met you can reduce the risk of developing bone density
dysfunctions such as Osteoporosis, developing Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus, and reducing the
risk of cardiac issues such as hypertension and angina.


Recommended exercise guidelines for adults in Australia
Adults should be active most days, preferably every day. Each week, adults should do either:

  • 2.5 to 5 hours of moderate intensity physical activity – such as a brisk walk, golf,
    mowing the lawn or swimming
  • 1.25 to 2.5 hours of vigorous intensity physical activity – such as jogging, aerobics,
    fast cycling, soccer or netball
  • An equivalent combination of moderate and vigorous activities

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