Health: Vitamin D supplements may help stave off diabetes – Study

A new research has suggested that Vitamin D supplements may help stave off diabetes as they improve insulin effectiveness. The study, published in the European Journal of Endocrinology, said high-dose supplementation could improve glucose metabolism to help prevent the development and progression of diabetes.

The researchers found that high doses of vitamin D boosted insulin’s action in muscle tissue of people for six months. 

The hormone, insulin, which is made by the pancreas, is important for metabolizing glucose, but in a growing number of people (diabetics) its effects are futile – and there is suffering without it. Type 2 diabetes can lead to serious health problems including nerve damage, blindness and kidney failure. 

The new data   presented by Canadian scientist suggested that high doses of the ‘sunshine vitamin’ could slow the condition in newly diagnosed patients – and may even protect people from developing it. 

According to the lead author of the study, Dr Claudia Gagnon, of Laval University in Quebec, “the reason we saw improvements in glucose metabolism following vitamin D supplementation in those at high risk of diabetes, or with newly diagnosed diabetes, while other studies failed to demonstrate an effect in people with long-standing Type 2 diabetes is unclear. 

She said: “This could be due to the fact that improvements in metabolic function are harder to detect in those with longer-term disease or that a longer treatment time is needed to see the benefits.” Her team examined the effect of vitamin D on 96 patients with either Type 2 diabetes – the form linked to obesity – or pre-diabetes.


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