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Vitamin D deficiency: a worldwide problem with health consequences

updated

Tags: chronic pain, vitamin D, muscle pain, etiology, treatment, nutrition, self-treatment, pain problems, muscle, pro

Seven articles on PainSci cite Holick 2008: (1) The Complete Guide to Trigger Points & Myofascial Pain(2) Complete Guide to Low Back Pain(3) Post-Exercise, Delayed-Onset Muscle Soreness(4) 6 Main Causes of Morning Back Pain(5) 34 Surprising Causes of Pain(6) Can Supplements Help Arthritis and Other Aches and Pains?(7) Vitamin D for Pain

PainSci summary of Holick 2008: ?This page is one of thousands in the PainScience.com bibliography. It is not a general article: it is focused on a single scientific paper, and it may provide only just enough context for the summary to make sense. Links to other papers and more general information are provided at the bottom of the page, as often as possible.

In one of the world’s most respected medical journals, Vitamin D activist Michael Holick writes, “Vitamin D deficiency is now recognized as a pandemic” and recommends that, “in the absence of adequate sun exposure, at least 800-1000 IU vitamin D3/d may be needed to achieve this in children and adults,” which is higher than historical upper limits.

~ Paul Ingraham

original abstract Abstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.

Vitamin D deficiency is now recognized as a pandemic. The major cause of vitamin D deficiency is the lack of appreciation that sun exposure in moderation is the major source of vitamin D for most humans. Very few foods naturally contain vitamin D, and foods that are fortified with vitamin D are often inadequate to satisfy either a child's or an adult's vitamin D requirement. Vitamin D deficiency causes rickets in children and will precipitate and exacerbate osteopenia, osteoporosis, and fractures in adults. Vitamin D deficiency has been associated with increased risk of common cancers, autoimmune diseases, hypertension, and infectious diseases. A circulating level of 25-hydroxyvitamin D of>75 nmol/L, or 30 ng/mL, is required to maximize vitamin D's beneficial effects for health. In the absence of adequate sun exposure, at least 800-1000 IU vitamin D3/d may be needed to achieve this in children and adults. Vitamin D2 may be equally effective for maintaining circulating concentrations of 25-hydroxyvitamin D when given in physiologic concentrations.

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