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The vitamin D, lupus link: A review of the literature

Posted on: February 22, 2013   by  Rebecca Oshiro


As many blog readers know, there has been much research studying the relationship between vitamin D and systemic erythematosus lupus of late. Some research shows that vitamin D and lupus have a relationship. But what does all the research say?

A new systematic review published recently in PLOS ONE examined this very question.

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8 Responses to The vitamin D, lupus link: A review of the literature

  1. Ashtatara

    There are already a treatment of Lupus and other autoimmune diseases with high doses of Vitamin D3. It is available in Brail and Portugal. It is unethical not to treat patients with autoimmune diseases with high doses of Vitamin D3. I am very serious about this. I know this treatment will be acknowledged in the future. This Brazilian neurologist and brain researcher is lightyears ahead of all of you. It is a crime not to make this treatment avalable to everybody. We cannot wait for further research. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=erAgu1XcY-U

  2. Rita and Misty

    I personally know a doctor now working at one of the Ivy Leagues. Much of his research is still focused in Brazil…This man isn’t a Vitamin D researcher; however, through collaborators in Brazil, he has been made aware of the health benefits of Vitamin D.

    He knows its potential. And, he agrees.

    But remember, it is difficult to swim against the tide. I’m certain many researchers and clinicians here in the USA realize the great healing potential of Vitamin D.

    The also have lives and careers and families. They are human. Few desire to be on the front line regarding this Public Health issue. It’s sometimes more politically correct to say: “Gee, that’s not my expertise.” And, I venture to say that is also human nature.

    I’m constantly being told that change occurs in small increments, and cannot be rushed.
    My response in return is “people will only grow if stretched.”

    Honestly, I do believe change is slow, but unless some of us keep extending the front boundaries, there is risk of complacency…of stagnation.

    I think it is possible to end this pandemic within the next 50 years.

    But, then at least a few may consider me to be a Pollyanna.

    To sunny days!

  3. Rebecca Oshiro

    Rita, I think you said it best, I do not need to add to that. Thank you!

  4. [email protected]

    Here are some of the titles of articles on Lupus and Vitamin D at VitaminDWiki
    Lupus and Vitamin D: good evidence, no conclusions – Review Jan 2013 (The study described at Vitamin D Council)
    Lupus flareups cut in half by just 2,000 IU of vitamin D – RCT Dec 2012
    When lupus affects the kidneys vitamin D levels drop even further – Nov 2012
    Hypothesis of Autoimmunity which includes Barr Virus and Vitamin D Deficiency – 2012
    Lupus flares totally eliminated by loading dose then 100000 IU of vitamin D each month – Oct 2012
    Vitamin D patent for treating immune system diseases
    Lupus 8X more likely to not even have 20 ng of vitamin D – May 2011
    Lupus in vicious circle with vitamin D – Nov 2010
    Vitamin D deficiency prevalent with Lupus R-Arthritis and Diabetes – Oct 2010
    Taking vitamin D reduced Lupus fatigue– Aug 2010
    Is it time to routinely supplement Lupus patients with vitamin D? – May 2010
    Lupus again found to be related to vitamin D deficiency – should supplementation start? – May 2010
    Link to all of those are at: http://www.vitamindwiki.com/Lupus

  5. Rita and Misty

    @Rebecca, I appreciate your kind words. 🙂

    BTW–If you (or others here) ever find yourself in a position of outreach…of trying to convince someone of the benefits of Vitamin D…I hope you’ll consider a lesson I learned from the field of labor relations:

    Always take the first negative response (actually, any negative response) you receive as an opportunity for you to solicit a positive future response…a “no” is always a “future yes” in my opinion.

    Simply circle around, and go back again (and again, and again).
    Change your approach, but keep trying.

    It isn’t for the faint of heart; and sometimes you’ll need to take a break–as this type of work can be extremely exhausting, but it does provide tremendous rewards, if diligent.

  6. Rebecca Oshiro

    @Rita, a dear colleague of mine’s motto was “No is the beginning of a negotiation.” 😀

  7. Rita and Misty

    🙂 At the risk of belaboring the point:

    “You learn by doing; and you heal by helping…”

    🙂 🙂 🙂

  8. Rita and Misty

    From the below link (of course, I think the target 25(OH)D level is too low…but at least research is moving in the right direction:


    “Vitamin D is well known for its essential role in maintaining bone density. A growing body of knowledge indicates that it may help prevent cancer, hypertension, and diabetes as well as improve muscle function in older individuals. Vitamin D may also have important immunological consequences for patients with autoimmune diseases such as lupus, according to Dr. John A. Hardin, Professor of Medicine (Rheumatology) and Microbiology and Immunology at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Professor of Orthopedic Surgery at Montefiore Medical Center, and Chief Scientific Officer of the Arthritis Foundation.

    Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE, or lupus) is a chronic, potentially fatal disease in which the body’s immune system attacks healthy cells, resulting in complications ranging from skin rashes and joint pain to seizures and kidney failure. Severe vitamin D deficiency is prevalent among patients with lupus, particularly African Americans, who are most commonly and severely affected by the disease. “Replacing patients’ vitamin D levels as part of treatment may improve the clinical outcome of SLE and significantly affect the health of people living in the Bronx,” said Hardin during a recent Medicine Grand Rounds on the topic.

    Target blood levels of vitamin D are currently thought to be 30–40 ng/ml. Daily doses of 1000–2000 IU achieve this level in most patients, and 2000 IU/day is considered safe.”

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