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Study: Vitamin D May Help Crohn's Disease

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People with Crohn’s disease might benefit from a daily vitamin D supplement. Research published in United European Gastroenterology Journal suggests that the vitamin reduces dysfunction in the intestinal barrier and may help patients remain in remission.

Past studies have shown a positive correlation between vitamin D supplementation and remission in Crohn’s disease, but experts weren’t sure why this was so. To investigate the impact of vitamin D on intestinal barrier function, researchers assigned 27 patients with Crohn’s disease in remission to three months’ of 2000 IU vitamin D or placebo daily.

While those in the placebo group experienced deterioration in their intestinal permeability, patients taking vitamin D tended to maintain it. Those in the supplementation group who had the highest levels of vitamin D also had less inflammation and reported a better quality of life.

The study was considered a pilot trial, and more research is needed to confirm its findings. Further studies may determine whether certain patients benefit more or less than others, and if levels of vitamin D need to be tailored to patients according to disease severity or other factors. But it is promising to think that this safe and inexpensive approach could be helpful in treating a potentially debilitating disease.

 

Posted in Digestive Health on February 10, 2016


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