Because half of the US and UK population is taking a supplement, we can safely say that we are in love with vitamins. Apparently, the favorite of the bunch is vitamin D, also known as the sunshine vitamin. It is believed that it provides the most proven benefits and many governments, including the one in the UK, believe that there is so much evidence for vitamin D’s benefits that they advise every adult to take it as a supplement for at least six months.
At first, it was used in the Victorian era to cure children who lived in urban poverty of rickets and now it is constantly used for the treatment or prevention of brittle bone disease (osteoporosis) and fractures. There have been associations made between this vitamin and the reduction of the risks for some common diseases, varying from cancer to depression.
Recently there has been reported a major clinical study, the largest ever from a clinical point of view, regarding the benefits of vitamin D. It involved over half a million people and 188000 fractures from 23 cohorts coming from many countries.
Because the levels of vitamin D are greatly influenced by genetics, scientists used genetic markers to track vitamin D levels in blood. This was done in order to prevent normal biases of observational studies, like confusing the cause and consequence of disease or the effects of other related health behaviors.
According to the results, there can be no association made between the levels of vitamin D over a lifetime and the risk of fracture. This might come as contradictory to the UK government’s view but it in fact confirms many previous clinical studies. To take it even further, even vitamin D deficiency is doubtful, as there isn’t an international consensus yet.
Laura grew up in a small town in northern Quebec. She studied chemistry in college, graduated, and married her husband one month later. They were then blessed with two baby boys within the first four years of marriage. Having babies gave their family a desire to return to the old paths – to nourish their family with traditional, homegrown foods; rid their home of toxic chemicals and petroleum products; and give their boys a chance to know a simple, sustainable way of life. They are currently building a homestead from scratch on two little acres in central Texas. There’s a lot to be done to become somewhat self-sufficient, but they are debt-free and get to spend their days living this simple, good life together with their five young children. Laura is an advocate for people with disabilities.