Chronic pain sufferers may need more vitamin D

Chronic pain sufferers may need more vitamin DA new Mayo Clinic study has found chronic pain may be related to inadequate levels of vitamin D.

This study determined that patients who required narcotic pain medication, and who also had inadequate levels of vitamin D, required medication doses nearly twice as high as those who had adequate levels.

Moreover, it found a correlation between increasing body mass index – a measure
of obesity – and decreasing levels of
vitamin D.

“Vitamin D is known to promote both bone and muscle strength,” says Dr Michael Turner, a physical medicine and rehabilitation physician at the Mayo Clinic and lead author of the study.

“[Its] deficiency is an under-recognized source of diffuse pain and impaired neuromuscular functioning,” he adds, stressing that by recognizing it, physicians can substantially improve their patients’ overall quality of life.

Recent research suggests that in addition to the benefits of strong muscles and bones, vitamin D plays an important role in the immune system, helping fight inflammation and certain types of cancer.

Those who are concerned about inadequate vitamin D intake may consider nutritional supplements.