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Get More Vitamin D: Healthy Foods to Add to Your Diet

Vitamin D is crucial for protecting against cancer, diabetes, depression, and heart disease. Although the recommended daily dose of vitamin D is 400 international units (IU), new research suggests taking at least 1,700 IU of vitamin D daily to get its health benefits. And while sunshine is the best source of vitamin D, you can still load up on the vitamin by adding these vitamin D-rich foods to your diet.

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Salmon

A 3.5-ounce serving of wild salmon has 360 IU, or 90 percent of the recommended daily value of vitamin D. It's also one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which are associated with a lowered risk of heart disease, cancer, and depression.

Try these healthy recipes:

Pasta with Smoked Salmon & Lemon Cream

BBQ Salmon with Greens and Sweet Potato

Lemon Butter Salmon & Broccoli Penne

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Cereal

It's time to put down the Lucky Charms: one cup of fortified breakfast cereal has 40 IU, or 10 percent of the recommended daily value of vitamin D. You'll also get more energy from iron and vitamin B, giving you plenty of reasons to make time for a healthy morning breakfast.

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Milk

One cup of fortified milk contains 98 IU, or about 25 percent of the recommended daily value of vitamin D. Another reason it does a body good: Studies have shown that women who drink 10 or more glasses of milk a week in their teens and 20s have lower rates of breast cancer. So drink up!

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Eggs

Consider this before deciding on an egg-white omelet: one egg yolk has 20 IU, about 6 percent of your daily value of vitamin D. Eggs are also rich in protein, which will keep you feeling fuller longer.

Try these healthy recipes:

Egg & Apple Bruschetta

Salmon, Spinach, and Cheddar Omelet

Black Bean Breakfast Burrito

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Swiss Cheese

A slice of Swiss cheese contains about 12 IU, which is 4 percent of your daily value of vitamin D. Another reason to choose Swiss: since it's a natural cheese, Swiss contains less sodium than a processed cheese like American cheese or cheese spreads. Goodbye, nachos.

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Shrimp

Shrimp cocktail isn't just low in calories -- a 3-ounce serving of shrimp also has 129 IU, about 32 percent of your daily value of vitamin D. This little crustacean is also rich in protein and contains zinc, which helps boost your immune system.

Try these healthy recipes:

Cilantro-Lime Shrimp Fajitas

Curried Quinoa Salad with Grilled Shrimp

Shrimp and Tropical Fruit

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Oysters

At 272 IU per 3 ounces, or 68 percent your recommended daily value of vitamin D, this seafood is more than just a supposed aphrodisiac. Oysters are also a good source of zinc, which helps your immune system and keeps your nails, hair, and eyes healthy.

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Fortified OJ

A cup of fortified orange juice contains about 100 IU or 25 percent of your recommended daily value of vitamin D. It's also rich in vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant that helps fight disease.

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Canned Tuna

Three ounces of canned tuna in oil has 200 IU or 50 percent of your recommended daily value of vitamin D. Tuna is also a great source of protein and omega-3s, giving you plenty of reasons to keep canned tuna in your pantry.

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Cod Liver Oil

It's not the tastiest option, but a tablespoon of this natural supplement has 1,360 IU, or 340 percent of your daily value of vitamin D, making it the best way to supplement your intake. Cod liver oil is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids, protecting you against heart disease, depression, and Alzheimer's.

Originally published on FitnessMagazine.com, March 2009.

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What do you think? Review this slideshow!

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KipWellington1981 wrote:

@ Anonymous 1 and 2: There are multiple foods that contain vitamin D, such as eggs, portabella & shiitake, but most rich in vitamin D is fish (Tuna fish, Raw Herring, Mackerel, next to salmon). Other options are using supplements.Getting sunlight on your skin is als o very (!) effective in increasing your vitamin D levels! Kip

4/11/2013 09:23:15 AM Report Abuse
bjkgiameo wrote:

hmmm....reports are stating too much Vitamin D is bad for women....we need to really think about calcium and vitamin D.....

6/13/2012 07:07:08 PM Report Abuse
pearlgem80 wrote:

could we have the entire list on one page before the slideshow?

4/6/2012 07:57:53 PM Report Abuse
a4295838 wrote:

Right now I am following the Diet Plan for You blog by nutrition specialist Kate Hill. Kate helped me lose weight in a healthy way in few weeks, without starving! If you want to lose weight, just visit Kate's blog at: http://dietplanforyou.blogspot.com/ I sincerely recommend it. Good luck to you all!

9/17/2011 03:18:55 AM Report Abuse
sm5653 wrote:

I wish I could view the entire slideshow on one page.

10/19/2010 07:35:14 PM Report Abuse
anonymous wrote:

Yeah! I am with Anonymous! I can't eat Salmon I have an allergy to the fish and I don't want to eat Tuna because of the mercury content! Anonymous 2

8/9/2010 09:13:14 PM Report Abuse
anonymous wrote:

Can we eat anything besides salmon.to help with vitamin

7/31/2010 08:58:11 PM Report Abuse

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