Over the years, the role of vitamin D in chronic liver disease has been studied by many scientists. Some research shows that chronic liver disease leads to vitamin D deficiency but many studies also show that low vitamin D levels may lead to liver disease.
What is Vitamin D?
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble substance that is synthesized in the skin during exposure to sunlight. This is why it is often called the sunshine vitamin. Although it is called a vitamin, it is not an essential vitamin in the strictest sense of the word because it is formed in the body. In contrast, vitamins are substances that must be obtained from the diet because the body does not produce them naturally. Very few foods ...view middle of the document...
Studies show that up to 30% of adults have lower than normal vitamin D levels in their bodies. This condition is called hypovitaminosis D, which is now considered a worldwide epidemic. Recent research suggests a strong association between low vitamin D levels with NAFLD, alcoholic liver cirrhosis, a group of autoimmune liver diseases such as primary biliary cirrhosis, autoimmune hepatitis, and primary sclerosing cholangitis. Scientists are not sure whether it is the low vitamin D levels that is causing liver disease or if the vitamin deficiency is a result of liver disease.
Doctors recommend adequate sunlight exposure, consumption of vitamin-D rich foods and fortified foods and supplementation if necessary to prevent vitamin D deficiency and its complications. Vitamin D supplements are generally recommended for people who live in certain places where there are long winters and not enough sunlight, elderly individuals who do not get enough sun exposure, and those who have poor diets. Guidelines from IOM set the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for vitamin D at 600 IU for everyone up to the age of 70, and 800 IU for older people to promote bone health. For people with liver disease, it is necessary to monitor their vitamin D levels to prevent or treat deficiency, which can lead to complications such as osteomalacia and osteoporosis.
Liver Detox Helps Prevent Liver Disease
With the increase in unhealthy lifestyle factors such as poor diet, alcohol consumption and nutritional deficiencies, chronic liver disease is fast becoming a common health problem. Doctors often recommend losing excess weight, eating a healthy diet and avoiding substances such as...