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Vitamin D: Health Benefits Everyone Should Know - Based on Scientific Research


  • Vitamin D: Health Benefits Everyone Should Know - Based on Scientific Research

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    Do you want to lose weight, get pregnant, feel a surge of energy, and avoid serious health problems? Check your vitamin D.

    Vitamin D is more like testosterone rather than vitamin B or C and is classified as a fat-soluble steroid hormone. In women, vitamin D is responsible for the entry of calcium into the egg, which means that it is fundamentally important for women planning a pregnancy.

    And without it, there is depression, obesity, muscle weakness, bones become fragile and the heart beats anxiously. In men, potency, and fertility improve thanks to this fat-soluble steroid hormone.

    The Japanese have discovered that it can help fight colds.

    Ok. Let's take a closer look at this vitamin. Is it really so good and necessary for our health? What do scientists say?

    Vitamin D and calcium

    Most of us remember vitamin D from childhood – someone choked on fish oil, and someone enjoyed a salad of cod liver to make up for its lack. Everyone has more or less heard that without it, calcium is not absorbed.

    For infants, this means rickets, and for older people, it means osteoporosis and a hip fracture. This is true. But calcium is involved in a huge number of processes in the body.

    It is necessary for the work of the muscles, the heart (it is also a muscle), and the reproductive system.

    A lot of research has been devoted to the effect of vitamin D on cardiovascular and metabolic diseases. A review of 28 of them was presented in a meta-analysis of British scientists.

    After studying data from almost 100,000 people – 99,745 - they concluded that “High levels of vitamin D in the adult population are associated with a significant reduction in cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and metabolic syndrome.

    Eliminating vitamin D deficiency in adults and elderly patients can make a significant contribution to ending current heart disease epidemics.” 16 studies included in the analysis show that when vitamin D deficiency is eliminated, the risk of heart disease is reduced by 33%!

    Vitamin D and depression

    A number of studies show a clear link between depression and the lack of vitamin D.

    Vitamin D receptors are found in parts of the brain that are responsible for the development of this disease.

    However, whether it is possible to solve the problem by making up for the lack of substance is unclear.

    For example, a group of scientists from the Medical Clinic, University Hospital of North Norway gave one group of people with low vitamin D levels and a diagnosis of “depression” a placebo, and another – 40,000 IU a week.

    Their results from this randomized clinical trial were published in the journal Br J Psychiatry in 2012. Unfortunately, high doses of vitamin D did not bring significant relief to the subjects.

    The same was shown by a large review of Canadian scientists: it is too early to say that vitamin D cures depression. But it has been proven that people who suffer from its lack are more susceptible to this disease.

    And in conclusion, the authors say that the issue requires even more careful study. At a minimum, vitamin D has few side effects and is much cheaper than antidepressants.

    While scientists are probing the ground. For example, endocrinologist Sankalp Pathak from Bayhealth Medical Center in Dover, Del, USA observed three of his patients suffering from type 2 diabetes, depression, and hypothyroidism.

    All three reported significant improvements in well-being and emotional state on vitamin D. Three people is not a study. But it is important that all three ladies suffered from type 2 diabetes. And here the role of vitamin D is much more obvious.

    Vitamin D, obesity and diabetes

    According to the WHO, the risk of developing type 1 diabetes in a child from China and Venezuela is 400 times lower than in a Finnish child. This fact greatly worried the Scandinavians.

    In their northern country, there is little sun, which means there are high chances of "not getting" vitamin D. So they conducted a large-scale study - they tracked the effects of this substance on babies for 30 years.

    And yes, they have found that the risk of developing type 1 diabetes is reduced if the correct level of vitamin D is maintained.

    And the Harvard School of Public Health found that if you maintain the right level of vitamin D at a young age, the likelihood of developing type 1 diabetes is reduced by 50%. Kassandra Munger, the author of the work, can't believe it: “it's amazing that such a serious problem can be solved by such a simple and safe means.”

    Obesity and related type 2 diabetes are also strongly linked to vitamin D.

    The same large meta-analysis of UK scientists showed that vitamin D intake reduces the prevalence of insulin-resistant (metabolic) syndrome by 51%, and in the studies reviewed, high levels of vitamin D reduced the likelihood of developing diabetes in 7 out of 9 cases.

    Vitamin D and Parkinson's disease

    Chinese researchers Liang Shen and Hong-Fang Ji from the Shandong Provincial Research Center for Bioinformatic Engineering and Technique, School of Life Sciences, Shandong University of Technology, Zibo conducted a meta-analysis, that is, studied works that together mention Parkinson's disease, a degenerative neurological disease that is widespread in the elderly, and vitamin D.

    They concluded that low levels of vitamin D do increase the risk of developing Parkinson's disease.

    A dietary supplement with this substance and a sufficient amount of time in the fresh air reduces this danger. In their opinion, scientists should continue to comprehensively study this substance.

    Vitamin D and multiple sclerosis

    The Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH), along with Bayer HealthCare, found that taking vitamin D in the early stages of multiple sclerosis can prevent the development of symptoms.

    Scientists led by HSPH Professor of epidemiology and nutrition Alberto Ascherio studied data on 465 patients with this diagnosis and found that the correct dose reduces the relapse rate by 57 percent.

    They also compared how much the disease progresses with normal levels of vitamin D and low levels. In the first case, the volume of affected areas is 25% less.

    According to the WHO, about 2.5 million people in the world suffer from multiple sclerosis. And most often it affects people at the most active age.

    More than 80 percent of COVID-19 patients were vitamin D deficient

    Many studies point to the beneficial effects of vitamin D on the immune system, especially in terms of protecting against infections.

    It has been proven that vitamin D has immunomodulatory activity.

    Vitamin D, interacting with its receptor in immune cells, modulates innate, and acquired immunity in response to the invasion of bacterial and viral pathogens.

    It also acts as a modulator of the renin-angiotensin pathway.

    Thus, vitamin D can help treat COVID-19 by preventing cytokine storms and subsequent illness, which is usually the cause of death.

    A new study found that 80 percent of COVID-19 patients were vitamin D deficient, with men having lower vitamin D levels than women.

    Patients with low vitamin D levels also had elevated levels of serum inflammatory markers such as ferritin and D-dimer.

    Scientific evidence suggests that vitamin D sufficiency (serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D of at least 30 ng/ml) reduces the risk of adverse clinical outcomes in patients with COVID-19 infection.

    Research link:

    Older people are more likely to be deficient in vitamin D, and therefore may have worse morbidity outcomes. Vitamin D status in this regard can be a useful prognosticator.

    One approach to preventing and treating COVID-19, especially for high-risk individuals such as the elderly and patients with underlying medical conditions, is to optimize blood levels of vitamin D both through sun exposure and food rich in vitamin D.

    This approach can have beneficial effects on both the immune system and the musculoskeletal system.

    Looking at how the pandemic progressed in 2020, you can see that with the arrival of summer and an increase in solar activity, the incidence of covid has decreased to a minimum.

    But with the arrival of autumn and a decrease in sun activity, the number of cases increased dramatically.

    Obviously, this correlation is not accidental. When exposed to sunlight, the body produces vitamin D, which increases the immune system. With the arrival of autumn, the situation is getting worse.

    Surely everyone noticed that common flu epidemics annually occur in the darkest time of the year, when there is no sun and the vitamin D status drops sharply, and with it, immunity worsens.

    Therefore, for the prevention of infections in the non-sunny season, it is very important to maintain the optimal level of vitamin D. This is especially important for residents of the northern regions, not spoiled by the sun.

    What to do

    Get tested for vitamin D and show it to your doctor, especially if:
    • You have dark skin, and you rarely go out in the sun
    • You have any skin, and you don't remember at all when you left the office in the daylight
    • You live in a place where there is little sun
    • You are a woman who is preparing for pregnancy. (Congrats!)
    • You are a man, you have problems with conception (but not necessarily with potency), you have recently behaved like a hysterical woman and you have problems with self-criticism (so in this description, your wife now recognized you, and not yourself)
    • In the summer on vacation you feel good, and the rest of the time – bad, sad, everything pisses you off. (Yes, perhaps the solution to the problem is not to quit but to take vitamins)

    Go to an endocrinologist with the results. But since not all doctors read about modern research, you can look to your child's pediatrician and your man's andrologist.

    Chances are good that they have heard more about vitamin D than the endocrinologist at the local clinic.

    Vitamin D is synthesized by the skin. It is believed that if you spend 15 minutes a day outdoors with your face, neck, hands exposed and without sunscreen, you get enough vitamin D. Here we need to make a reservation that the day should be sunny.

    No, this does not mean that you should go to the solarium or sunbathe on the beach. The American cancer society and many others emphasize: “the risks of sunburn are significantly higher than the benefits of vitamin D.”

    Tanning, in general, is bad. Harmful. This can cause cancer and wrinkles (if cancer doesn't seem scary enough to you).

    Edward Giovannucci, Professor of Nutrition and Epidemiology HSPH, recommends paying attention to fat fish. In 100 grams of cooked salmon, there will be 360 IU, 85g of canned tuna - 200 IU.

    Well, you don't have to worry about an overdose. You can't get it from food.
    Last edited by Claire Weller; 12-03-2020, 05:24 PM.

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