People with vitamin D deficiency may experience a number of problems, such as decreased bone health. This is why it's so important for individuals to get enough of this nutrient through sun exposure, food or vitamin D supplements. Recently, research presented at The Endocrine Society's 94th Annual Meeting in Texas suggested that maintaining vitamin D levels is not just important for the body, but the mind as well.
Researchers from the Bayhealth Medical Center in Delaware found that women experienced support for their mood when they received treatment for their vitamin D deficiency.
"Vitamin D may have an as-yet-unproven effect on mood," said researcher Sonal Pathak, M.D., an endocrinologist at Bayhealth.
The women in the study ranged in age from 44 to 66, all of whom were having trouble controlling their moods. These women also had had risk factors for vitamin D deficiency, such as low vitamin D intake and inadequate sun exposure, which is a common problem for older females.
Over the course of eight to 12 weeks, the women took vitamin D supplements to help their levels return to normal. After taking the supplements, study participants reported that they experienced improvements in their mood. This is one of a number of studies that have found that vitamin D may have an impact on mental health.
According to the Vitamin D Council, one study of elderly individuals found that individuals who reported problems with their mood had vitamin D levels 14 percent lower than others.
These findings should encourage people to get more vitamin D. People can consume fatty fish such as tuna or salmon, or fortified milk and cereal to help them increase their levels of this nutrient. There are also many vitamin D supplements on the market.