Vitamin D(og) is Good for the Soul

Dogs make you go outside and play… and that’s a good thing!

© 2017 Beth Terry, EverybodysLost.com

Get a Dog, they’ll make sure you get your Vitamin D(og)!

Arizona has 300 days of sunshine a year. With that kind of sun, one would think we’re all swimming in Vitamin D, which most people get from sunlight. Vitamin D helps the body metabolize calcium and low levels can be a precursor to osteoporosis.

Studies have shown the population of Arizona isn’t taking full advantage of those sunny days. We stay indoors or run from the house to the car to the office or store. With our legendary summers trending 100+ days straight of “triple digit” temps, turns out we’re conditioned to stay out of the sun!

Ah – the hikers and bikers are yelling at me, “Well WE go outside!!” Yes, I know, but nearly one quarter of the Caucasian population, one third of the Hispanic population and half of the African-American population in Arizona were found to be Vitamin D deficient.

Turns out I’m one of them. I was advised to take supplements. To do more weight bearing exercises. To drink more milk and eat more Kale. Instead, I got a dog.

Rescue A Dog!

Dogs make you go outside. They need to be walked, to be potty-trained and mostly they need to play. PLAY!

My happy little rescue appears to be part Chihuahua, part Antelope and definitely part Cat. She forces me to go outside. She’s still a one year old puppy and wants to play “The CLAW” with me. When the door is opened, she leaps outside like a young deer and bounds across the lawn.

If you peeked over my fence, you would see a ridiculous 65-year old woman racing back and forth across the lawn squealing, “The claw… the claw is going to get you!” Then you’d see a wonderful six- pound puppy racing with the wind, dodging and turning, faking left and right while I run after her. She grins and makes what I swear are a combination of a yelp and a meow, then takes off at high speed to the other side of the lawn. I have never been more grateful for putting grass in my back yard than I am today.

After three months of this newfound exercise program, I returned to the lab to check my Vitamin D levels. I had forgotten to refill my Vitamin D supplement, and I’ve never been fond of dairy. Turns out running around for an hour a day in the back yard chasing a dog has raised my Vitamin D levels perceptibly.

They say petting a dog is good for your heart. It’s also good for the soul and your bones. Go rescue a dog today! I promise the dog will rescue you back! It’ll do you good and keep the doctor away!  (If you are in Phoenix, PACC911 unites the entire pet rescue community. Look online for rescue groups in your region.)

Blessings,

Welcome Love and a Pet into your Life Today,

Beth Terry

All Rights Reserved. ©2017 Beth Terry, CSP

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1 Response

  1. Linda Francis says:

    Beth – please post this for me. I couldn’t get past your Captcha screen!!
    Congratulations on your new pup…glad you took the plunge again!!! Sadly, I just had to bid farewell to my Penny last Monday. I got 18 glorious months with her… I am not a doctor, nor do I play on on TV, but I do have a theory about why everyone is so deficient in Vitamin D. Yes, we hike, we walk and play with our dogs outside, but we’ve also slathered ourselves in sunscreen. Our bodies manufacture Vitamin D right on our skin, IF we get at least 20 minutes of unobstructed sunlight, preferably in the morning hours, and then give ourselves at least 30 minutes before showering. Go manufacture some D today…sans sunscreen.

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