I don't get much sun on my skin and won't use artificial bulbs. Also, I'd rather not use a supplement. I'm looking for exceptional food sources of vitamin-D, such as 50-100% in a single serving. (Cod liver oil, although it may qualify as a food source, is excluded.) My diet contains much true vitamin A and beta-carotene, which could exacerbate my potential vitamin-D deficiency. I have read that salmon and sardines are exceptional, but I wonder to what extent the vitamin-D survives the cooking process even when cooked just until done over lower cooking temperature. Is vitamin D relatively heat-sensitive or -resistant? I have considered eating a dozen raw egg yolks per day, but would rather not.
Personally, I would not want to eat as much fish as I would need in order maintain a good blood level of D3. The risk of mercury toxicity is too high in this day & age, IMO.
For example, I personally need 6,000 IUs/day from sun and/or supplements to maintain a blood level of 60 ng/ml.
*The levels are not very high for food sources: Fatty fish species, such as:
Catfish, 85 g (3 oz) provides 425 IU (5 IU/g)
Salmon, cooked, 100 g (3.5 oz) provides 360 IU (3.6 IU/g)
Mackerel, cooked, 100 g (3.5 oz), 345 IU (3.45 IU/g)
Sardines, canned in oil, drained, 50 g (1.75 oz), 250 IU (5 IU/g)
Tuna, canned in oil, 100 g (3.5 oz), 235 IU (2.35 IU/g)
Eel, cooked, 100 g (3.5 oz), 200 IU (2.00 IU/g) A whole egg provides 20 IU if egg weighs 60 g (0.333 IU/g)
Beef liver, cooked, 100 g (3.5 oz), provides 15 IU (0.15 IU/g)
Fish liver oils, such as cod liver oil, 1 Tbs. (15 ml) provides 1360 IU (90.6 IU/ml)*
D3 supplements are cheap, & most are naturally-based (Carlson's Solar D Gems are made from sheep's lanolin & cod liver oil.)
Ideal blood level for someone in excellent health is 50-60 ng/ml. If you have an inflammatory condition or autoimmune disease, then 60-80 ng/ml is a good range.
May I ask what your reasoning is for not supplementing? (Especially considering that the USRDA has already been determined to be insufficient for health -- it is meant to prevent diseases like rickets -- not to provide optimal health). I found supplementation with vitamin D in MCTs to be highly beneficial when I can't get sun, despite consumption of salmon, scallops, and herring in substantial quantity.
Herring, mollusks, Salmon, trout, mackeral, sardines...
This website might help you: http://www.vitamindcouncil.org
Do you know what your blood level is so that you can track your progress.
Good luck with this
Eat canned fish that has the bones and skin. There's more vitamin D in there than the skinless, boneless kind. Canned fish has the advantage of having edible bones, so you get more calcium than fresh fish. If you are light skinned and live in the US, 15-20 minutes of mid-day sun on your face and arms is all you need to get enough vitamin D from the sun. So if you can get outside you won't have to spend a whole lot of time squinting into that strange yellow thing in the sky.