Vitamin D supplementation may slow the progression of type 2 diabetes in newly diagnosed patients and those with prediabetes, according to a study published online on July 1, 2019 in the European Journal of Endocrinology. The open-access article is titled “Effects of 6-Month Vitamin D Supplementation on Insulin Sensitivity and Secretion: A Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Trial.” The study findings suggest that high-dose supplementation of vitamin D can improve glucose metabolism to help prevent the development and progression of diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is an increasingly prevalent disease that places a huge burden on patients and society and can lead to serious health problems including nerve damage, blindness, and kidney failure. People at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes (prediabetics) can be identified by several risk factors, including obesity or a family history of the disease. Although low vitamin D levels have previously been associated with an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, some studies have reported no improvement in metabolic function. However, these studies often had a low number of participants or included individuals with normal vitamin D levels at the start who were metabolically healthy, or who had long-standing type 2 diabetes. Whether vitamin D supplementation has any beneficial effect in patients with prediabetes or with newly diagnosed diabetes, especially in those who have low vitamin D levels, has remained uncertain. In this study, Dr. Claudia Gagnon, and colleagues from Université Laval in Quebec, examined the effect of vitamin D supplementation on glucose metabolism in patients newly diagnosed with type 2 diabetes or identified as at high risk of developing the condition.
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