You May Be Vitamin D Deficient, Here's Why It Matters

Steven Gundry on the mindbodygreen Podcast

Image by Andreas Von Scheele / mbg Creative

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Want to live longer? Us, too. Steven Gundry, M.D., is here to tell us how to do just that.

As a heart surgeon and best-selling author, and author of the new book The Longevity Paradox: How to Die Young at a Ripe Old Age, Dr. Gundry is doing what it takes to live a long, healthy life.

When he was on the mbg podcast last February, he talked about avoiding lectins, grains, and sugar—all tentpoles to his New York Times best-selling book The Plant Paradox: The Hidden Dangers in "Healthy" Foods That Cause Disease and Weight Gain. Now, he's back with even more insight on bettering our health and debunking the many myths of longevity.

At the core of our conversation is the microbiome. In his practice in California, Dr. Gundry has been seeing what he calls "super-olds," or people living beyond 100 years old. He's found the common denominator in these individuals is a diverse, healthy microbiome. "It's actually the microbiome and its interface with the wall of your gut that will determine what happens to you," Dr. Gundry shared.

While it may seem genetics determine our health and longevity, he pointed out that our genome only plays about 6 percent into what's going to happen to us, and about 94 percent is related to our lifestyle: the food we eat and the people we're surrounded by. In simple terms, it means we can do something to change the trajectory of our health.

On his list for how to live to 100 and beyond is getting enough vitamin D. "People with the highest vitamin D levels have the longest telomeres," he explained.

These DNA-protein structures protect our chromosomes, and the longest ones are the most telling of our longevity. Unfortunately, there's a high chance you're not getting enough as 80 percent of Southern Californians are vitamin D deficient (that says a lot). Dr. Gundry pointed out that it can take large doses of vitamin D, monitored by a healthcare professional, to raise someone's vitamin D levels, which he says is vital to our health.

This episode will leave you with more knowledge about what's going on in your gut and inspire you to make changes that could add years to your life.

Enjoy this episode, sponsored by Nature's Way! Don't forget to subscribe to our podcast on iTunes, Google Play, or Stitcher, and sign up for our podcast newsletter!

And are you ready to learn more about how to unlock the power of food to heal your body, prevent disease & achieve optimal health? Register now for our FREE web class with nutrition expert Kelly LeVeque.

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