How vitamin D affects thyroid disease

2019-06-14 Health No comment

Vitamin D is known for its importance in managing calcium in the gut, bones, blood and disease resistance. However, many studies now indicate that the effects of vitamin D levels may also be a contributing factor to many other health problems.

Researchers now believe that it plays a vital role in cell communication. Clinical studies have linked abnormalities in vitamin D levels to colon, prostate and breast cancer, as well as heart disease, weight gain and thyroid disease.

Vitamin D production

Vitamin D is unique compared to other vitamins because it is almost impossible to get the vitamins you need from food. Conversely, when you are exposed to natural or artificial UVB light, your body naturally produces it in the skin.

Once your body produces vitamin D or you use it as a supplement, it will be sent to the liver. The liver converts vitamin D to 25[OH]D and delivers it to various parts of the body and activates it. Once activated, it can perform its duties.

Autoimmune disease

Autoimmunity occurs when the immune system operates a person's healthy tissues and cells as a threat. When this happens, their bodies produce an immune response and an attack. This reaction can cause damage, inflammation and chronic pain in many parts of the body.

Vitamin D deficiency may reduce the body's ability to fight infection and may be associated with autoimmune diseases such as Hashimoto's thyroiditis and Graves' disease.

Clinical research

Several 2014 studies presented at the annual meeting of the Thyroid Association are of particular interest. Researchers from Nanjing, China, evaluated 34 patients with Hashimoto's thyroiditis and 32 patients with severe illness and evaluated 52 healthy patients. The researchers measured many thyroid-related factors, including vitamin D3.

Vitamin D is actually a group of compounds labeled as vitamins D1, D2 and D3. Vitamin D3 is the natural form of vitamins and is also the most biologically active.

The researchers found that vitamin D3 levels in patients with autoimmune thyroid disease were significantly lower than in healthy controls. Patients with high thyroid peroxidase antibodies in the thyroid autoimmune disease also have lower vitamin D levels. This suggests that vitamin D deficiency may be associated with autoimmune thyroid disease or cause autoimmune thyroid disease.

Brazilian researchers studied 54 Hashimoto's patients and 54 healthy controls. They also found that 63.2% of patients had vitamin D deficiency. Those with low vitamin D levels also have higher thyroid stimulating hormone levels and larger thyroid glands.

Lack of vitamin D.

In general, the skin produces enough vitamin D when exposed to sufficient UV light. However, the risk of skin cancer or melanoma now means that many people use sunscreen and cover the body. We also spend more time working and playing indoors.

As more clinical trials show a link between vitamin D and thyroid function, many doctors now recommend vitamin D testing as part of thyroid assessment and care. Nonetheless, functional practitioners and physicians who follow a medical model may be different for you based on your results.

Medical model and functional model

The medical model recommends 400 IU of vitamin D per day. They also define enough serum 25[OH]D levels to exceed 50 nmol / L because it "meets the needs of 97.5% of the population." This test is used to measure vitamin D levels in the 25-hydroxyvitamin D blood test.

Medical models are usually recommended to supplement to increase low vitamin D levels. However, functional care methods recognize that multiple causes may result in low vitamin D levels. Therefore, it is recommended that supplements may be ineffective and counterproductive before considering overall health and other possible problems.

Supplements do not always correct low vitamin D levels because they do not solve potential problems. Vitamin D receptors in some autoimmune patients cannot be activated due to changes in their DNA sequences. Therefore, they need vitamin D above normal blood levels to avoid vitamin D deficiency.

Vitamin D is fat-soluble, and some patients with thyroid problems such as Hashimoto's thyroiditis have low gastric acidity and poor fat absorption. Autoimmune diseases such as Hashimoto's thyroiditis and Graves' disease also cause the immune system to work overtime, depleting the body's storage of vitamin D. After that, the most important thing is to solve the intestinal and digestive problems and regulate the immune system before considering vitamin D supplementation.

A highly qualified functional practitioner will focus on your gut and digestive health, and if they are satisfied, they may have a 25-hydroxyvitamin D blood test for your vitamin D levels.

Your doctor may recommend supplements between 60 and 80 nmol / L. This is still well below the 125 nmol / L threshold and patients may experience adverse reactions. After a few months, they will retest. If their serum levels rise to acceptable levels, the doctor will adjust the vitamin D so the serum level remains between 50 and 60 nmol / L.


Insufficient vitamin D is only one factor that causes thyroid problems, so self-replenishment is not recommended because it may not work if there is a potential problem. Discuss your thyroid problems with functional practitioners to develop an effective treatment plan.

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