The importance of vit D supplementation is without doubt obtaining the global media attention in the latest time. (Source, MayoClinic) One of the reasons for this huge media attention is the already discovered “vit D pandemic deficiency,” found quite common not only for people in the Nordic latitudes, but also in California where the daily sunshine is a constant factor. (Source, NH-WC Beyond Holistic)
There are multiple data in the modern literature showing that vitamin D deficiency is the reason behind chronic degenerative diseases of the advanced age (e.g. osteoporosis, sarcopenia, cardiovascular disorders, diabetes, several common cancers due to general immune suppression, frequent infectious diseases, muscle weakness, general fatigue, fractures, and autoimmune diseases. There are also multiple data that vit. D may reduce incidence of cancer and diabetes. (Source, Wiki and WebMD)
The state of hyperparathyroidism was recently found to be secondary to Vitamin D3 deficiency. The parathyroid gland is responsible for maintaining well balanced calcium levels, which is vital for proper functioning of the muscular and nervous systems. One latest study found that insufficient levels of immune cells were produced in the thymus glands of laboratory animals with vitamin D deficiencies. (Source, Wiki)
A new study published in Diabetes Care (2010) and done in collaboration with Shanghai Institute in China Biological Sciences found data for vitamin D deficiency in 93 percent of the total number of 3,262 Chinese people, between 50-60 years old. Vitamin D insufficiency, quantified as [25 (OH) D levels < 75 nmol/L] was found in 24 percent of the people, while vitamin D deficiency of 25 (OH) D levels < 50 nmol/L was recorded in 69 percent of the people.
The study was named the Nutrition and Health of Aging Population in China also known as the NHAPC project. (Lu et al., 2010) The big surprise of the above study was the finding that people with lowest range of vit. D, [an average of 25(OH) D levels equal to 28.7 nmol/L] were at around 52 percent more likely to have insulin resistance linked to metabolic syndrome. In fact 42 percent of these people were finally diagnosed with metabolic syndrome.
While this study was done in predominantly elderly Chinese people, the results were found similar to findings of previous studies in adults, suggesting the obvious fact that vitamin D deficiency is converting in a serious health issue. Dr. Oscar Franco, lead author of the study claimed, “Vitamin D deficiency is becoming a condition that is causing a large burden of disease across the globe with particular deleterious impact among the elderly. Our results are consistent with those found in British and American populations.”
There seems to be an overwhelming evidence of literature data that show vit D deficiency is common, and research is now working to prove how much of vit D additional supplementation actually works to prevent chronic maladies. It is already proven that an 8th week of daily supplementation may resolve any vit D deficiency. There is also some evidence that the vitamin may reduce the incidence of several types of cancer and type 1 and 2 diabetes. “We found that low vitamin D levels were associated with an increased risk of having metabolic syndrome, and was also significantly associated with increased insulin resistance,” concluded the author.
You maybe already know that vitamin D deficiency is common among people with chronic degenerative diseases [e.g. obesity, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, eating disorders (bulimia and anorexia nervosa), chronic alcoholism, people who have complete or partial resection of their thyroid gland or overactive parathyroid glands (hyperparathyroidism), vegetarians, and many others.
Vitamin D deficiency is now recognised as a worldwide concern and metabolic syndrome has become a global epidemic. More research is needed to find out why older people are more likely to have lower levels of vitamin D and how this is linked to the development of metabolic syndrome and related metabolic diseases,” concluded the author.
Franco said, “We found that low vitamin D levels were associated with an increased risk of having metabolic syndrome, and was also significantly associated with increased insulin resistance.” The only correct and reasonable way to supplement with vit D is after performing serum and urine tests that are both useful in learning more about all of the individual vit D body levels.
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