D Vitamin for Depression Relief


D Vitamin for Depression Relief

Among all the various vitamins that are used in depression treatment, the D vitamin for depression relief is one that deserves special mention.

Vitamin D and depression

Both a vitamin and a hormone, vitamin D is necessary for life and well-being because it regulates the functions of genes involved in vital bodily function, such as the functions of the brain, heart, immune cells, bones, skin, nerves and blood vessels. [1]

Besides being necessary for the proper absorption and utilization of calcium, vitamin D has also been implicated in depression. [2]

Dangerously low blood levels of vitamin D have been found in depressed patients [1]. In turn, supplementation using a single vitamin D megadose (250 times the amount of vitamin D in normal multivitamins) has been found to have a significant antidepressant effect [1].

Low levels of vitamin D in the body during winter suggest a possible link between vitamin D and seasonal affective disorder (SAD). [2]

The role of D vitamin for depression relief may be attributed to its powerful anti-inflammatory properties [1]. Chronic inflammation is a major contributor to depression, as it interferes with the brain’s ability to produce and utilize serotonin, an important mood-stabilizer. Chronic inflammation also increases levels of cortisol (an anti-inflammatory stress hormone) in the body, which in turn can have depressive effects on the brain. [1]

In turn, the anti-inflammatory effects of vitamin D is necessary to prevent or counter chronic inflammation (may be caused by excessive high omega 6 to 3 ratios, etc [1]). In this way, vitamin D can serve as an antidepressant against depression resulting from chronic inflammation.

According to Joan Mathews Larson, PH.D., founder and executive director of the highly esteemed Health Recovery Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota, deficiency in vitamin D can also cause exhaustion and hypothyroidism, a possible cause of depression itself. [3]

Extent of vitamin D deficiency

Our bodies are actually able to produce the vitamin D we need when we go under the sun. The ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun activate the conversion of cholesterol into vitamin D. In fact, most of us are able to obtain an entire day of vitamin D supply with just a short exposure to midday sunlight, except in winter. [1]

However, problems arise with our modern lifestyles, where many of us spend a large part of our day indoors.

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