According to a study published in the United European Gastroenterology Journal, vitamin D supplementation may prolong remission in Crohn’s disease.

Researchers from The Trinity Centre for Health Sciences, in Dublin, Ireland, sought to determine the changes in gut barrier function as determined by intestinal permeability and antimicrobial peptide concentrations, as well as disease markers in Crohn’s disease following vitamin D supplementation. In the double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study, researchers assigned 27 patients in remission of Crohn’s disease to 2,000 IU/day vitamin D supplementation or placebo for three months. Patients treated with the vitamin D supplementation were more likely to maintain intestinal permeability vs. the deterioration seen in the placebo group. Further, inpatients with the highest blood levels of vitamin D showed reduced inflammation as measured by C-reactive protein and antimicrobial peptides; they also reported a better quality of life.

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Study authors concluded that this is the first report on the effect of vitamin D supplementation on intestinal permeability and antimicrobial peptide measures in a cohort with Crohn’s disease. The data support previous evidence that vitamin D may play a role in maintaining intestinal barrier integrity. Larger randomized controlled trials are needed to further understand its translation into treatment for Crohn’s disease, they concluded.

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