Several studies lately have emphasized the potential role of vitamin D in reducing lupus disease activity. Lupus is an autoimmune disease that attacks the kidneys joints, skin, and other parts of the body.
An Egyptian study found that lupus patients commonly have low vitamin D levels regardless of their exposure to the sun and that disease activity worsens as vitamin D levels drop.
At the American College of Rheumatology 2011 annual meeting, researchers presented a study that used large supplemental doses of natural vitamin D (as opposed to synthetic vitamin D) to improve the immune responses of lupus patients. In this study, patients were given 100,000iu per week for 4 weeks followed by a monthly dose of 100,000iu.
Despite the large dose, patients did not experience symptoms of vitamin D excess. In response to the vitamin D, patients generated more of the protective immune cells whose purpose is to quiet down faulty immune cells.
More Lupus Research
- 3 grams of omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil daily significantly improved measures of lupus disease activity
- Lupus patients taking curcumin, the extract of the spice turmeric, experienced a marked improvement in kidney function over placebo. Curcumin has been used in several other autoimmune diseases due to its anti-inflammatory effects.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Research and nutritional information included is not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure any disease and should not be used for medical diagnosis or treatment. Consult your physician before initiating any new dietary or supplement program. References available by request.