Sunshine Vitamin Alleviates Fibro Pain And Supports Thyroid Health
As reported by The Vitamin D Council (01/14) New Trial: Vitamin D Helps Alleviate Pain In Those With Fibromyalgia
Researchers out of Austria have found that vitamin D supplementation may lessen
pain in patients with fibromyalgia.
Fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) is a disease characterized mainly by widespread pain
throughout the body. Additionally those with FMS experience fatigue, memory and
mood issues. Researchers aren’t sure yet what causes FMS, but some think it is due to increased sensitivity to
pain signals by the brain.
Few studies have looked at vitamin D and FMS. So far, the main link found is
that those suffering from FMS often have low vitamin D levels. Additionally,
studies have shown vitamin D can be beneficial to different types of pain in
general, not specific to FMS.
“Low blood levels of calcifediol [25(OH)D] are especially common in patients with
severe pain and fibromyalgia. But although the role of calcifediol in the
perception of chronic pain is a widely discussed subject, we lack clear
evidence of the role of vitamin D supplementation in fibromyalgia patients,” stated lead researcher Dr. Florian Wepner.
This prompted researchers in the present study to ask, can vitamin D
supplementation help with pain in those suffering from FMS?
To answer this question, the research team looked at a group of 30 women with
FMS who all had vitamin D levels below 32 ng/ml. They randomized the women to
either receive vitamin D supplementation or a placebo. Their goal for the
vitamin D group was to raise their levels to between 32 and 48 ng/ml over the
course of 20 weeks.
Twenty-four weeks after vitamin D supplementation stopped, the researchers found
a marked reduction in perceived pain among the treatment group. Compared to the
placebo group, the treatment group significantly improved on physical role
functioning and on morning fatigue. There were, however, no alterations in
depression or anxiety symptoms.
“We believe that the data presented in the present study are promising. FMS is a
very extensive symptom complex that cannot be explained by a vitamin D
deficiency alone. However, vitamin D supplementation may be regarded as a
relatively safe and economical treatment for FMS patients and an extremely
cost-effective alternative or adjunct to expensive pharmacological treatment as
well as physical, behavioral, and multimodal therapies,” said Dr. Wepner. “Vitamin D levels should be monitored regularly in FMS patients, especially in
the winter season, and raised appropriately.”
Sunshine Vitamin May Support Thyroid Health
As reported in NHIOnDemand Health & Wellness Trade Site (1/12) Impact of Vitamin D Deficiency in Patients with Hyperthyroidism based on a study featured in The Journal of Clinical Densitometry
A study sought to determine the impact of vitamin D deficiency on bone mineral
density in patients with hyperthyroidism. "Hyperthyroidism" is when the thyroid
gland is overactive instead of underactive. It secretes too much thyroid
hormone. In this case, more of a good thing is definitely not better. Excess
thyroid hormone can cause rapid heartbeat. Body temperature is elevated. The
hyperthyroid individual may experience extreme weight loss, in spite of a huge
appetite, because they burn up calories too fast. Hyperthyroidism can make a
person nervous, emotionally unstable, and unable to sleep.
The study included 30 newly diagnosed patients with hyperthyroidism. The
researchers collected blood samples from each patient to evaluate levels of
calcium, phosphate, alkaline phosphatase, 25-hydroxy vitamin D and parathyroid
hormone. Bone mineral density measurements were taken at the hip, forearm and
spine. The results of the study revealed that eight of the patients had serum
vitamin D levels less than 25 nmol/L. The group who was vitamin D deficient was
found to have significantly higher levels of parathyroid hormone than those who
were vitamin D sufficient. It was also determined that patients with low levels
of vitamin D had lower bone mineral density than those with normal levels of
vitamin D. These findings suggest that vitamin D deficiency may increase levels
of parathyroid hormone and decrease bone mineral density in patients with
Vitamin D is known as the sunshine vitamin because it is formed in the body by
the action of the sun's ultraviolet rays on the skin. The fat-soluble vitamin
is converted in the kidneys to the hormone calcitrol, which is actually the
most active form of vitamin D. The effects of this hormone are targeted at the
intestines and bones.