Will taking a vitamin D supplement help you instantly become bigger, faster, and stronger? we don’t think so, but results from a recently published study suggest that it may play an important role in your physical and athletic performance.
This study, published in the journal Medicine And Science In Sports And Exercise reviewed all the scientific literature available comparing vitamin D levels and physical performance. The researchers found many studies, some going back to the 1950s that show their is possibly a connection between your body’s vitamin D levels and factors related to your athletic performance. Some of the these findings include: higher vitamin D levels corresponds to larger fast twitch muscle fibers (the fibers that help you run, jump, lift, and grow bigger muscles), older men perform better athletically when vitamin D levels are high, and that vitamin D rich ultraviolet light improves athletic performance. Their research even finds that during a competitive season your results are likely to be best when your vitamin D levels are high and worst when they are at their lowest.
Do the results of this study mean that you can begin taking handfuls of vitamin D every day and expect to win and Olympic medal? No, probably not. What they do suggest is that if you want to get the best possible results in the gym or perform better in your favorite sport you may want to have your vitamin D levels tested by your doctor. Then you will know whether you need to increase your vitamin D levels with nutritional supplements or by other means to ensure your performance isn’t compromised by low levels of this vital nutrient.
If you are already taking vitamin D or decide to do so make sure you use a supplement that uses vitamin D3 which is also called Cholecalciferol. Physicians and health experts recommending using this form of vitamin D since it is the type your body is best able to utilize.
One vitamin D supplement we like is NOW Vitamin D3. It only contains vitamin D3 and comes in many different quantities and dosages so there is definitely one that will fit your needs.
Cannell JJ, Hollis BW, Sorenson MB, Taft TN, Anderson JJ. Athletic Performance and Vitamin D. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2009 Apr 3.