The relationship between vitamin D and your immune system 12 Nov 2020A growing body of scientific evidence shows that vitamin D plays a crucial role in disease prevention and maintaining optimal health. You have about 30,000 genes in your body and vitamin D affects nearly 3,000. This is in addition to all the vitamin D receptors through out your body. Inflammation is the body's attempt at self-protection; the aim being to remove harmful stimuli, including damaged cells, irritants, or pathogens. While inflammation is a vital part of the body's immune response, it can also be problematic and plays a role in some chronic diseases e.g asthma, arthritis. Researchers investigated specific signalling events that vitamin D suppresses in order to inhibit inflammation. Research published in The Journal of Immunology called it the "inflammatory cascade"; low vitamin D levels failed to inhibit the cascade while adequate levels did the job. Researchers concluded that patients with chronic inflammatory diseases who are also vitamin D deficient may benefit from supplementation. Researchers in Turkey, reported in the international Journal of Rheumatic Diseases that chronic widespread musculoskeletal pain is improved with vitamin D. Fibromyalgia sufferers and other patients with chronic widespread musculoskeletal pain were given 50,000 iu/week oral vitamin D3 for three months. Afterwards scientists discovered decreases in pain, fatigue upon awaking, lack of energy, tender points and depression. Significantly there were 30 Fibromyalgia patients at the beginning of the study and only 20 at the end! Next week I want to look at the relationship between low vitamin D levels and common ailments. References Zhang Y, et al. (2012). Vitamin D Inhibits Monocyte/Macrophage Proinflammatory Cytokine Production by Targeting MAPK Phosphatase-1. The Journal of Immunology.
Yilmaz, R., Salli, A., Cingoz, H. T., Kucuksen, S. and Ugurlu, H. (2016), Efficacy of vitamin D replacement therapy on patients with chronic nonspecific widespread musculoskeletal pain with vitamin D deficiency. Int J Rheum Dis.