Can Vitamin D Supplements Treat IBS?
YES, in fact according to a recent study Vitamin D supplements can definitely help treat and manage the symptoms of IBS(1). There are many patients suffering from irritable bowel syndrome who are taking vitamin D supplements to get relief from their irritable bowel syndrome.
What is Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)?
Women are more likely to develop Irritable Bowel Syndrome than men(3). In the United States, It is estimated that about 12% of people suffer from IBS.
What Causes Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
The exact cause of Irritable Bowel Syndrome is not clear; however, stress, bad lifestyle and some foods are known to trigger IBS(3).
What is the Treatment for Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
Treatment for Irritable Bowel Syndrome consists of changes in the patient’s lifestyle and diet(4). Medications that are used to treat Irritable Bowel Syndrome consist of laxatives and loperamide(5).
A research shows that patients suffering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome tend to have low vitamin D levels, indicating that vitamin D plays a role in IBS(6).
How Vitamin D Can Help With Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) Symptoms?
Vitamin D is a one of the vital vitamins for the human body, as it is important for health of the bones and teeth(7, 8). Vitamin D also has to play an important role in immune system functioning and nerve cell communication(9, 10).
Deficiency of Vitamin D is known to greatly increase the risk factor for osteomalacia and rickets(11). Osteomalacia is a medical condition where there is softening of the bones and is seen in adults (12). Rickets is a medical condition that develops in children and is a bone development disorder that affects children(13).
There are also studies that link decreased vitamin D levels to other bone problems, such as osteoporosis, cancer and inflammatory bowel disease(14, 15, 16).
Studies Showing Vitamin D Benefitting Irritable Bowel Syndrome:
Dr. Corfe and his associates have strived to learn more about the relation between Irritable Bowel Syndrome and vitamin D. An analysis was done of all the literature, and the studies done on people taking vitamin D supplements and suffering symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome and also studies looking at the levels of vitamin D levels in patients suffering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
According to these studies, there is evidence, which shows that patients suffering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome commonly also suffer from vitamin D deficiency. Research also shows an inverse relation between the levels of vitamin D and the severity of Irritable Bowel Syndrome symptoms(17).
So, there is evidence that vitamin D supplements given to patients suffering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome helps in improving its symptoms. Vitamin D supplements are beneficial to patients suffering from IBS(1).
However, even with the evidence, it is said that more studies are required before vitamin D supplements can be extensively prescribed to patients having Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
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