Vitamin D is important in our body because it is responsible for enhancing intestinal absorption of calcium and phosphate. Vitamin D is group of secosteroids and the most important compounds in this group are vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) and vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol). This group of vitamins can be ingested from the diet and from supplements. The body can also synthesize vitamin D3 in the skin, from cholesterol, when sun exposure is adequate, hence its also called as “sunshine vitamin”.
Vitamin D function:
Vitamin D deficiency in children results in rickets or osteomalacia and osteoporosis in adults. Other than these main functions, this vitamin also helps in maintenance of adequate serum concentrations and maintenance of the immune system.
Relation with diabetes:
But the latest research work in this area has shown that Vitamin D has a relation with type 2 diabetes where it helps to reduce type 2 diabetes pain and depression.
Type 2 diabetes is associated with depression and pain, but few studies have looked at how pain may affect the treatment of depression in patients with type 2 diabetes and no studies have evaluated the role of vitamin D supplementation on this association.
Researchers in this study tested the efficacy of weekly vitamin D2 supplementation for six months on depression in women with type 2 diabetes. Depression significantly improved following supplementation.
In addition, 61 % of patients reported shooting or burning pain in their legs and feet (neuropathic pain) and 74 % reported numbness and tingling in their hands, fingers, and legs (sensory pain) at the beginning of the study. Researchers found a significant decrease in neuropathic and sensory pain at three and six months following vitamin D2 supplementation.
“Pain is a common and often serious problem for women with type 2 diabetes and depression,” Todd Doyle, lead author and fellow, Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Neurosciences, Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine, said. “While further research is needed, D2 supplementation is a promising treatment for both pain and depression in type 2 diabetes.”
Source: Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicin