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  • Writer's pictureDr Samintharaj Kumar

Diabetes and Vitamin D

Updated: Apr 8, 2023

Diabetics may be deficient in vitamin D for a variety of reasons. It is important to note that not all diabetics have vitamin D deficiency, but it is more common among people with diabetes. Some possible reasons for the deficiency include:

  1. Lifestyle factors: People with diabetes may have lifestyles that contribute to vitamin D deficiency, such as limited sun exposure, poor nutrition, or obesity. Sunlight is a major source of vitamin D, and diets low in vitamin D-rich foods can contribute to deficiency.

  2. Insulin resistance: There is evidence that suggests vitamin D may play a role in insulin sensitivity and glucose metabolism. Vitamin D deficiency can lead to insulin resistance, which is a common feature of type 2 diabetes. Conversely, insulin resistance may also impair vitamin D metabolism and contribute to deficiency.

  3. Kidney function: Diabetes can lead to kidney damage, which in turn may affect the body's ability to convert vitamin D into its active form. People with diabetic nephropathy, or kidney disease caused by diabetes, are more likely to have low levels of active vitamin D.

  4. Medications: Some medications used to manage diabetes or its complications may interfere with vitamin D metabolism, leading to lower levels of the nutrient in the body.

  5. Genetic factors: There may be genetic factors that predispose people with diabetes to vitamin D deficiency, although more research is needed to understand this relationship.

It is important for people with diabetes to have their vitamin D levels checked and discuss any concerns with their healthcare provider. If a deficiency is identified, supplementation or other interventions may be recommended by me.

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