Vitamin D deficiency as a possible cause of chronic inflammation -

Vitamin D appears to reduce chronic inflammation

According to a recent study, a lack of vitamin D leads to an increased risk of chronic inflammation, which can be the basis of many serious diseases. Correcting a vitamin D deficiency could therefore reduce the risk of many diseases such as diabetes, autoimmune diseases and heart disease.

Researchers from the University of South Australia provide the first molecular evidence that vitamin D deficiency is associated with increased levels of inflammation in a large study. The research results were recently presented in the International Journal of Epidemiology.

Inflammation is part of the healing process

While inflammation is an essential part of the body's healing process, prolonged exposure can lead to the development of complex conditions such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease and autoimmune diseases.

High inflammation scores with low vitamin D levels

According to recent research from the University of South Australia task force, there is a direct link between low levels of vitamin D and high levels of inflammation. The vitamin D level is therefore an important biomarker of the risk of chronic inflammatory diseases.

What was reviewed?

As part of the study, researchers evaluated the genetic data of 294,970 participants. Data are from the UK Biobank. The link between vitamin D and so-called C-reactive protein, an indicator of inflammation, has been analyzed.

Compensating for the deficiency could protect against chronic inflammation

According to lead scientist Dr. Ang Zhou, the findings suggest that increasing vitamin D levels in people with vitamin D deficiency can reduce chronic inflammation.

"Inflammation is the body's way of protecting tissues after injury or infection," explains Dr. Zhou.

More C-reactive protein in case of vitamin D deficiency

According to her, high levels of C-reactive protein are produced by the liver in response to inflammation, so when there is chronic inflammation, the body also has higher levels of C-reactive protein.

"In this study, vitamin D and C-reactive protein were examined and a one-sided association was found between low levels of vitamin D and high levels of C-reactive protein, which manifests as inflammation," summarizes the head of the study.

"Increasing vitamin D levels in people who are deficient can reduce chronic inflammation and help them avoid a number of associated diseases," Dr. Zhou points out.

Can vitamin D protect against diabetes and heart disease?

In addition, the study results suggest that increasing vitamin D levels may be a way to mitigate the harmful effects of excess weight (obesity) and inflammation in chronic diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular and autoimmune diseases. (vb)

Author and source information

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This text corresponds to the specifications of the specialized medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been verified by health professionals.


Graduate editor (FH) Volker Blasek


University of South Australia: Running low on vitamin D? It could be the cause of chronic inflammation (Published: 08/08/2022), Zhou, Elina Hyppönen, et al. : Vitamin D and C-reactive protein deficiency: a two-way Mendelian randomization study; in: International Journal of Epidemiology (2022),

Important Note:
This article contains general advice only and should not be used for self-diagnosis or treatment. It cannot substitute a visit to the doctor.