Vitamin D deficiencies in multiple sclerosis patients seems to be the headline everywhere one reads. If you are like me and have multiple sclerosis, you may be popping vitamin D3 pills every day to compensate for low levels in your blood. Do all of these pills make a difference? The results of research are mixed.
Yes. Taking vitamin D supplements will raise the blood count for D as reported recently in Neurology and Journal of Neurology. A six-month study of 40 people demonstrated a reduction in the inflammatory state of immune cells. The study was too short to include MRI lesions and relapse results. A second study conducted for two years showed, “no significant effects on levels of inflammation-related chemicals in the blood stream.” There was a difference in the studies though. The first one had 40 patients taking 10,400 IUs per day while the second had 68 patients taking only 20,000 IUs per week.
Obviously, more research needs to be completed. Seems to me researchers should include thousands of patients and track vitamin D levels, lesions on MRIs, relapses, and disability scores. It seems simple to me. Vitamin D at the levels in these studies showed no ill effects aside from nausea in a select few. I, for one, am going to continue my 10,000 IUs per day.
Vitamin D can be found naturally in fish, eggs, meat, fortified foods such as milk & cereal, fish, and various fruits and vegetables.
MS Research Australia. “International research adding more pieces to the vitamin D puzzle.” January 28, 2016. http://www.msra.org.au/International_research_adding_more_pieces
Image from blogs.discovermagazine.com.