|Aging|| Senior Issues
| ||In a study of 667 women in low-level care and 952 women in high-level care, vitamin D deficiency (serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D <25 nmol/1) was found in 22% of the women in low-level care and 45% of the women in high-level care, with the level of serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D being independently associated with the first time of a fall. [J Am Geriatr Soc. November 2003;51(11): pp.1533-1538]|
Multiple Sclerosis / Risk
| ||The possibility that vitamin D could help protect people from developing multiple sclerosis (MS) has been posited by researchers in recent decades, but evidence to support that link has been scant. In the first large-scale, prospective study to investigate the relationship between vitamin D levels and MS, researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) have found an association between higher levels of vitamin D in the body and a lower risk of MS. The study appears in the Journal of the American Medical Association, December 31, 2006.|
| ||As vitamin D deficiency is common in Hashimoto's and many other forms of autoimmune diseases, patient status should be should be determined. A simple blood test can help determine whether or not you are deficient in Vitamin D.|
Congestive Heart Failure
| ||Various studies show that vitamin D deficiency is widespread among the critically ill and suggest that that vitamin D deficiency may contribute to the inflammatory basis of various illnesses. Early in 2004, researchers studied patients with congestive heart failure and found elevated levels of TNF, another marker of inflammation. They also found critically low levels of calcidiol [25(OH)D], the only reliable marker of vitamin D, and even found low levels of calcitriol, the active form of vitamin D that is usually low only in those who are severely vitamin D deficient.|
| ||Researchers found that vitamin D deficiency is associated with increased inflammation in otherwise healthy people. Increased inflammation in the body can increase the risk of chronic inflammatory conditions, including coronary heart disease (CHD) and diabetes. Further, the researchers found that inflammation was lowered by the use of vitamin D. [|
QJM 2002 Dec;95(12):787-96]
Muscle Pains (Myalgia)
| ||A was conducted on 150 patients with nonspecific musculoskeletal pain. Researchers measured their calcidoiol levels, an indicator of vitamin D ingestion, and found every patient to be vitamin D deficient. |
The study screened 83 immigrants and 67 non-immigrants, of both sexes who ranged from 10 years to 65 years of age, from six broad ethic groups. The researcherís results found that 100% of the Black, Hispanic, East Africa and American Indian were vitamin D deficient. Both the non-immigrant and immigrant groups were both equally deficient. Out of the 150 patients, 28% had severely deficient vitamin D levels, 55% of who were younger than 30 years.
Muscle Cramps / Twitching
| ||Vitamin D is necessary for absorption of calcium. A vitamin D deficiency can result in muscle cramping. Even one dose has helped in some cases of chronic muscle cramping.|
| ||Research published in the American Medical Association "Journal of Internal Medicine" suggests that vitamin D therapy can facilitate nerve growth and regulate nerve functioning which can benefit patients suffering from neuropathy symptoms.|
Low Back Pain / Problems
| ||In a study conducted in Saudi Arabia, researchers found vitamin D deficiency in a group of 360 chronic back patients. All the patients were given physiological doses of cholecalciferol for three months, which improved the chronic pain. Even though the doses they were given (5,000 to 10,000 IU) are said to be toxic (the American institute of Medicine says 3,800 IU is toxic) all the patients normalized their calcidiol levels. [Mayo Clinic Proceedings December, 2003]|
Taking vitamin D with vitamin A has been reported to be helpful in treating some cases of sciatica pain.
Cancer / Risk - General Measures
| ||It has been known for many decades that there is an inverse correlation between sun exposure and cancer deaths. It has also been observed that there is a direct association between skin cancers and sun exposure and an inverse association between skin cancers and internal cancers. Some even thought that development of skin cancer brought immunity against various internal cancers. It is now understood to be a function not of immunity, but of vitamin D concentrations. The important point here is that cancer prevention can be provided not by additional sun exposure (increasing the risk of melanoma) but by the use of supplemental vitamin D.|
Calcitriol, the activated form of vitamin D, has been shown to induce cell differentiation and to control cell proliferation. People with a low vitamin D level are less able to make calcitriol in an amount sufficient to exert the controls over cell proliferation that are needed to reduce cancer.
Autoimmune Disease: One of a large group of diseases in which the immune system turns against the body's own cells, tissues and organs, leading to chronic and often deadly conditions. Examples include multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus, Bright's disease and diabetes.
Bile: A bitter, yellow-green secretion of the liver. Bile is stored in the gallbladder and is released when fat enters the first part of the small intestine (duodenum) in order to aid digestion.
Calcium: The body's most abundant mineral. Its primary function is to help build and maintain bones and teeth. Calcium is also important to heart health, nerves, muscles and skin. Calcium helps control blood acid-alkaline balance, plays a role in cell division, muscle growth and iron utilization, activates certain enzymes, and helps transport nutrients through cell membranes. Calcium also forms a cellular cement called ground substance that helps hold cells and tissues together.
Cancer: Refers to the various types of malignant neoplasms that contain cells growing out of control and invading adjacent tissues, which may metastasize to distant tissues.
Chronic: Usually Chronic illness: Illness extending over a long period of time.
Congestive: Pertaining to accumulation of blood or fluid within a vessel or organ.
Crohn's Disease: Chronic inflammatory disease of the gastrointestinal tract. The most common symptoms are abdominal pain, often in the lower right area, and diarrhea. Rectal bleeding, weight loss, and fever may also occur. Bleeding may be serious and persistent, leading to anemia.
Diabetes Mellitus: A disease with increased blood glucose levels due to lack or ineffectiveness of insulin. Diabetes is found in two forms; insulin-dependent diabetes (juvenile-onset) and non-insulin-dependent (adult-onset). Symptoms include increased thirst; increased urination; weight loss in spite of increased appetite; fatigue; nausea; vomiting; frequent infections including bladder, vaginal, and skin; blurred vision; impotence in men; bad breath; cessation of menses; diminished skin fullness. Other symptoms include bleeding gums; ear noise/buzzing; diarrhea; depression; confusion.
Diarrhea: Excessive discharge of contents of bowel.
Distal: Anatomically located further away from a point of reference, such as an origin or a point of attachment.
Endemic: Used to refer to a disease that constantly occurs in any particular geographical region.
Hypertension: High blood pressure. Hypertension increases the risk of heart attack, stroke, and kidney failure because it adds to the workload of the heart, causing it to enlarge and, over time, to weaken; in addition, it may damage the walls of the arteries.
IU: International Units. One IU is 1/40th (0.025) of a microgram (mcg).
Melanoma: A life-threatening type of skin cancer that occurs in the cells (melanocytes) that produce melanin, the pigment found in skin, hair, and the iris of the eyes.
Metabolism: The chemical processes of living cells in which energy is produced in order to replace and repair tissues and maintain a healthy body. Responsible for the production of energy, biosynthesis of important substances, and degradation of various compounds.
Multiple Sclerosis: Demyelinating disorder of the central nervous system, causing patches of sclerosis (plaques) in the brain and spinal cord, manifested by loss of normal neurological functions, e.g., muscle weakness, loss of vision, and mood alterations.
Neuropathy: A group of symptoms caused by abnormalities in motor or sensory nerves. Symptoms include tingling or numbness in hands or feet followed by gradual, progressive muscular weakness.
ng: Nanogram: 0.000000001 or a billionth of a gram.
Osteoporosis: A disease in which bone tissue becomes porous and brittle. The disease primarily affects postmenopausal women.
Prostate: The prostate gland in men that surrounds the neck of the bladder and the urethra and produces a secretion that liquefies coagulated semen.
Rickets: Vitamin-D deficiency characterized by abnormal calcification of bone tissues.
Sciatica: Pain in the lower back and hip radiating down the back of the thigh into the leg, often due to herniated lumbar disk.
Serum: The cell-free fluid of the bloodstream. It appears in a test tube after the blood clots and is often used in expressions relating to the levels of certain compounds in the blood stream.
TNF: Tumor Necrosis Factor. TNF-alpha is a pro-inflammatory cytokine significantly elevated in all leukemias except for AML and myelodysplastic syndromes.
Vitamin A: A fat-soluble vitamin essential to one's health. Plays an important part in the growth and repair of body tissue, protects epithelial tissue, helps maintain the skin and is necessary for night vision. It is also necessary for normal growth and formation of bones and teeth. For Vitamin A only, 1mg translates to 833 IU.
Vitamin D: A fat-soluble vitamin essential to one's health. Regulates the amount of calcium and phosphorus in the blood by improving their absorption and utilization. Necessary for normal growth and formation of bones and teeth. For Vitamin D only, 1mcg translates to 40 IU.