What are good food sources of vitamin D?
Is it possible to get your daily requirement of vitamin D by nutrition only? The answer is tricky. Yes, it is possible. However, this might prove to be a difficult challenge since very few food items contain vitamin D. You would probably also need to consume large portions in order to meet your vitamin D needs.
The recommendations for vitamin D intake for adults can depend on many factors (find recommendations based on region and life stage here). The following table* shows how much you would need of each of the listed foods to reach just the minimum of 600 IU. Some foods contain vitamin D naturally, and some are fortified with vitamin D.
|Dietary Source of vitamin D||Vitamin D content (approximate per serving)||Approximate amount to provide 600 IUs of vitamin D|
|Sardines, canned||500 IU (3.5 oz, 100 g)||4.2 oz (120 g)|
|Salmon, cooked||360 IU (3.5 oz, 100 g)||5.8 oz (167 g)|
|Mackerel, cooked||345 IU (3.5 oz, 100 g)||6 oz (174 g)|
|Tuna, canned in oil||230 IU (3.5 oz, 100 g)||9 oz (260 g)|
|Halibut, baked or broiled||144 IU (2.6 oz, 75 g)||11 oz (313 g)|
|Tuna salad||144 IU (125 mL)||17 oz (521 mL)|
|Oysters, boiled or steamed||136 IU (6 medium)||26 medium|
|Milk (nonfat, reduced-fat or whole) vitamin D – fortified||100 IU (8 oz, 240 ml)||48 oz (1.4 L)|
|Margarine, fortified||60 IU (1 tbsp, 15 ml)||10 tbsp (150 ml)|
|Egg yolk||20 IU||30 eggs|
|Beef, ground, regular, pan-fried||12 IU (2.6 oz, 75 g)||132 oz (3,750 g)|
|Chicken breast, roasted (with skin)||8 IU (2.6 oz, 75 g)||198 oz (5,625 g)|
*Adapted from the Health Canada “Nutrient Value of Some Common Foods – Booklet", 2008