Vitamin D for Diabetes
Supplements of vitamin D may help you improve insulin resistance and insulin sensitivity, according to a study published recently in the British Journal of Nutrition.
Researchers with the Institute of Food Nutrition and Human Health in New Zealand recruited 81 women between 23-60 years of age living in New Zealand. All of the participants were insulin resistant, which is a major risk factor fordiabetes.
The participants were randomly assigned to receive 100 micrograms of vitamin D3 or a placebo daily for six months.
By the end of the study, the participants receiving the vitamin D saw improvements in both insulin resistance and insulin sensitivity, both of which are high risk factors for diabetes.
The most positive results in the study were observed among women with blood levels of vitamin D over 80 nanomoles per litre.
This study adds to the already significant body of evidence showing that people with diabetes or at high risk of developing diabetes may want to consider taking vitamin D supplements.
A meta analysis published earlier this year in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism found a similar association between diabetes risk and vitamin D.
Vitamin D has been shown to have numerous health benefits, including better bone health, lower blood pressure, stimulation of the immune system and even protection against certain cancers. However, many Americans do not get enough vitamin D daily.
This is especially true for older adults because as you age your skin becomes less efficient at synthesizing the vitamin during exposure to the sun.
A supplement is a great way to increase your vitamin D intake. You can also eat more milk products, fish and many cereals which either contain vitamin D naturally, or are fortified with the vitamin.