Me and Vitamin D?
For many years Vitamin D was the forgotten vitamin. After its addition to milk in the 1930's to aid in calcium absorption in the the small intestine and the prevention of rickets in children there was not much said about it. The belief was that it only played a role in calcium absorption and pretty much nothing else.
This began to change about 15 years ago when it was discovered that multiple sclerosis (MS) patients had quite low levels of Vitamin D. This began a number of studies to determine if the disease caused the low levels of Vitamin D or if low levels of Vitamin D caused the disease. While the overall cause of MS remains a mystery to this day, it has been found that Vitamin D supplementation can often slow and in some cases reverse the progression of MS in many sufferers.
This relationship between Vitamin D and MS lead to some other questions. With Alberta having the highest rate of MS in the world, studies were begun on the overall levels of Vitamin D in Albertans (and western Canadians in general). A number of studies have shown that at least a one point during the year, more than a third of people have low levels of Vitamin D.
How could this be? After all, Alberta is known for its large amounts of sunshine even in the winter. The reality is that while it is sunny in February, the temperature makes it unlikely that anyone is going to go out and a swimsuit and tan. Minus 20 is just a little to cold for the average
Albertan (your naturophathic physician included)! Tanning booths are a poor option due to the substantial increase risk of skin cancer. So what is one to do?
First, come see your naturopathic physician as he is best suited to discuss and evaluate your specific situation. It is unlikely that rickets is an issue for you, and unlikely you have MS. However, Vitamin D deficiency plays an important role in a number of health concerns. It is involved in preventing, osteoporosis, cancer, inflammation, fibromyalgia, type I diabetes,
upper respiratory tract infections, overall immune function, and mood to name just a few. So what is your Vitamin D status? Find out! Book your appointment today!
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This is Dr. Michael's blog written from the great metropolis of Edmonton and providing you naturopathic information - enjoy!