THE ALL- IMPORTANT VITAMIN D (YOU NEED IT IN CROHN'S DISEASE AND ULCERATIVE COLITIS)
Vitamin D is known as the sunshine vitamin. This is one of the few nutrients that we do not have to eat to maintain levels in our body. Vitamin D regulates calcium and phosphorus levels in our body which is imporves bone strength. Researchers are discovering that vitamin D also has an important role in the immune system, so it is absolutely essential to have enough.
Adults with Crohn's disease have lower Vitamin D levels than healthy individuals—and those with more severe Crohn's have the lowest levels. The studies on kids vary more. Some say those with IBD have levels that are similar to their healthy friends; other research suggests they have lower levels. Research suggests that all kids and teens are getting less vitamin D than they should.
What we do know is that kids and adults are going outside less and drinking more sodas instead of vitamin D fortified milk. In addition, those with IBD can have decreased absorption.Vitamin D absorption is enhanced with a source of fat. Since fat absorption is also decreased in IBD, vitamin D absorption also decreases.
Bottom Line: those with IBD need more vitamin D. How do you know if you need more?
This article, as well as all others, was reviewed and edited by a member of our Medical Advisory Board.
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