If you try to prevent type 2 diabetes, you must have done a lot to your diet.
Recent studies have shown that people with high risk of type 2 diabetes should avoid high fat and high-sugar food while eating more food rich in dietary fiber.
A new study published in journal PLOS One shows that another famous nutrient- vitamin D, may have a close relation with the disease: people with vitamin D deficiency have higher risk of type 2 diabetes.
The research was conducted by a team from University of California, San Diego. The team checked health data of 903 healthy adults.
None of the people had type 2 diabetes or pre-diabetes during clinic visits during 1997-1999. They came back to the study in 2009.
The researchers tested their vitamin D levels in the blood, and their fasting plasma glucose and oral glucose tolerance.
During the study (12 years), 47 people developed type 2 diabetes and 337 people developed pre-diabetes. Their blood sugar levels were much higher than the rest healthy people.
The researchers found the minimum healthy level of vitamin D in the blood plasma was 30 ng/ml, which is 10 ng/ml higher than currently recommended amount.
For people whose vitamin D level was higher than 30 ng/ml, the risk of type 2 diabetes was 33%; for people whose vitamin D level was higher than 50 ng/ml, the risk of type 2 diabetes was 20%.
Based on the results, the researchers suggested that people with vitamin D levels below 30 ng/ml should consider vitamin D deficient.
These people were up to 5 times at greater risk for developing diabetes than people with levels above 50 ng/ml.
To summarize, the lower vitamin D level a person has, the higher risk of type 2 diabetes s/he has.
“Further research is needed on whether high 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels might prevent type 2 diabetes or the transition from pre-diabetes to diabetes,” said the lead author.
“But this paper and past research indicate there is a strong association”
Now the question is how to get 30+ ng/ml vitamin D level in your blood. The team suggests that that level requires dietary vitamin D supplements of 3000 – 5000 IU per day.
If you can get some sunshine with minimal clothing for 10-15 minutes every day outdoors at noon, then you can take less vitamin D supplement.
This is much higher than the currently recommended dietary vitamin D amount, which says for babies up to 1 year, 400 IU vitamin D is necessary; for people aging 1 to 70 years, 600 IU per day is good; and for people over 70 years, 800 IU is okay.
If you want to take more vitamin D supplements, that is fine if your blood vitamin D level is no more than 125 ng/ml.
Too much vitamin D in your blood can harm your health, and you may feel sick, have kidney problems and heart rhythm problems.
Therefore, to reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes, have a healthy diet while taking a daily vitamin D supplement pill.
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