Share on PinterestNew research suggests that the possible benefits of vitamin D and omega-3 supplements may include fending off autoimmune diseases. MoMo Productions/Getty ImagesPrevious research has noted correlations between vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids, and autoimmune disease.According to the authors of a new study, there has been no large scale, randomized controlled trial to investigate the possible connections.The new, long-term clinical study has now found that vitamin D, omega-3 fatty …….
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Share on PinterestNew research suggests that the possible benefits of vitamin D and omega-3 supplements may include fending off autoimmune diseases. MoMo Productions/Getty Images
- Previous research has noted correlations between vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids, and autoimmune disease.
- According to the authors of a new study, there has been no large scale, randomized controlled trial to investigate the possible connections.
- The new, long-term clinical study has now found that vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids, or both reduce the risk of developing an autoimmune disease.
Previous research has identified a correlation between vitamin D consumption and a reduced incidence of autoimmune diseases. The same is true of marine-derived omega-3 fatty acid supplements.
Now, at the American College of Rheumatology’s ACR Convergence 2021, researchers have presented the results of the first large, national, randomized controlled trial investigating the value of daily vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acid, or both supplements in preventing autoimmune disease.
In the trial, taking vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acid supplements for 5 years reduced the occurrence of autoimmune disease in older adults by 25–30%, compared with not taking them.
Senior author of the research Dr. Karen Costenbader, director of the Lupus Program at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, recapped for the conference attendees the earlier studies that led to the new trials.
When the human body gets exposure to sunlight, it produces vitamin D, which supports healthy teeth and bones. With less sunlight, the body may not generate enough vitamin D naturally. Research has linked insufficiency of vitamin D to a range of conditions.
“In past ecologic observations,” Dr. Costenbader explained to the conference audience, “inflammatory bowel disease, multiple sclerosis, and type 2 diabetes have been shown to be more prevalent at northern latitudes, where circulating vitamin D levels are lower.”
Conversely, she added, “Both high plasma 25-OH vitamin D and high residential UV exposure were associated with a decreased risk for rheumatoid arthritis [RA] among women in the Nurses’ Health Study in our past work.”
Of omega-3 fatty acids, Dr. Costenbader said, “In past observational studies, lower RA risk has been observed in those with increased fatty fish intake.”
Dr. Costenbader also noted that in a different study, “higher [omega-3 (n-3)] fatty acid-to-total lipid proportion in [red blood cell] membranes was associated with a lower prevalence of anti-CCP and rheumatoid factor antibodies, and lower progression to inflammatory arthritis among healthy volunteers.”
Dr. Costenbader and her colleagues recruited 25,871 adults for the VITamin D and OmegA-3 TriaL (VITAL).
All of the men who …….