Vegetarians have to be extremely vigilant about getting the proper amount of vitamin D. While vitamin D can be soaked into the human body through sun rays, this is not without it's risks and since many of us tend to use sunscreen or moisturisers with sunscreen in them we may find that direct sunlight is just not enough. A great way to boost your Vitamin D is to consume foods that have high levels and since I am a vegetarian, let's take a look at some vegetarian foods high in the sun's goodness.
Vegetarians should consume plenty of eggs. They are a tasty way to get vitamin D and you can eat them in a variety of recipes. The egg's yolk actually contains the vitamin D so be sure to consume the entire egg, not just the egg whites. Each egg yolk provide you with around 40 IUs. This wont' be enough to meet your daily vitamin D requirements so be sure to eat more than merely eggs to maintain your vitamin D level. Consider that a single egg has 200 milligrams of cholesterol. The American Heart Association advises that you consume 300 milligrams or less each day for heart health. So eggs can supplement your vitamin D but eating too many can be unhealthy.
While not something that I suggest, it is worth mentioning; fortified breakfast cereals are often fortified with Vitamin D, but don't forget that they can be high in sugar and tend to be overly processed. You can also mix it with some fortified milk to satisfy a large part of your daily vitamin D requirement. The fortified milk and a single cup of fortified cereal will generally provide you with about 90 IUs of vitamin D. Keep in mind that while cow's milk may also be fortified with vitamin D, most other sources of dairy like cheese and ice cream are not. Once exception is yogurt. A 170 gram yogurt serving has around 80 IUs. It is worth noting that some soy milks and rice milks are also fortified with vitamin D.
Although it isn't popular, cod liver oil is an excellent source. Oftentimes, it is flavored with citrus or mint to make it more palatable but it never tastes great. A single teaspoon of cod liver oil has around 1,300 IUs of vitamin D. It is also sold in capsule form.
Vegetarians should specifically pick out certain types of orange juice for their vitamin D. Each brand's orange juice has different levels and some brands have none. So check those labels closely before buying. The typical 225ml glass of fortified orange juice has at least 100 IUs of vitamin D.
Some types of mushrooms have vitamin D. Those grown in the light contain the vitamin. Mushrooms grown in the dark do not contain any vitamin D. So check the labels and stay loyal to brands that use ultraviolet light. Coles have specifically said in the past that they have mushroom with Vitamin D so if you are not sure then that's an easy way to start. An 85 gram serving of these mushrooms has about 400 IUs of vitamin D.
If you don't care for the foods listed above, you should consider taking vitamin D supplements. They'll help you reach your vitamin D requirements and you won't have to run the risk of skin cancer due to overexposure to the sun's ultraviolet rays. You can take your vitamin D supplement dose all at once. Those aged 9 and older should take up to 4,000 IUs of vitamin D supplements per day.