Vitamin D delivers newly discovered benefits

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Music soothes not only the savage beast, but the heart and soul of you and you and you! Maybe that's why so many musicians, from DeeDee Bridgewater ("Dear Ella") to Dee Snider ("I Wanna Rock") and Dee Clark ("Raindrops"), can make you feel so good.

Turns out that the Dee -- vitamin D, that is -- has more power to protect your happiness, heart and lungs than was previously known.

A study in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology found that people with D levels in the top 25 percent had a 4.3-fold greater amount of cardiorespiratory fitness than those in the bottom 25 percent! That's because vitamin D helps provide muscles with more oxygen and that gives you more power, whether you're walking, biking or dancing.

Here's how to make sure you get enough D:

From supplements: Adults under age 65 should aim for 600-800 IU of D daily to avoid deficiency, but children 9 years and older, pregnant and lactating women and older adults can take as much as 4,000 IU. Our advice: Generally, you can take 1,500 to 2,000 IU of D-2 or D-3 daily. Best bet? Get a blood test and then take supplements to attain a blood level of 50-80 ng/dL.

From food: Fatty fish, such as salmon and ocean trout, mushrooms and foods fortified with vitamin D are good sources.

Au natural: There's no benefit from sun exposure from October 15 to April 15, north of the line between Los Angeles and Atlanta -- you're not making D-2; sun exposure in winter only fosters skin cancer.

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   (c) 2018 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D.

Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

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