Psoriasis is an autoimmune illness which causes cell accumulation on the surface of the skin resulting in red, scaly, thick, and itchy patches. Statistics tells that more than 7.5 million citizens in America are suffering from this disease, which also puts a huge pressure on the economy, i.e. the annual costs for healthcare for psoriasis were around $112 billion in 2013. The overactive T-cells cause immune responses which speed up the growth of skin cells and they move to the outer skin layer. They build, crack, and bleed.
The Side Effects of Psoriasis
Psoriasis patients have a much higher risk of other chronic illnesses including cardiovascular problems, eye-related issues, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, as well as low self-esteem, social isolation, and depression.
The Link between Psoriasis & Vitamin D
Psoriasis patients are advised to test their vitamin D levels in the blood because this vitamin is a potent immune modulator and it can avert autoimmune illnesses. It is in charge of regulating the growth of skin cells, influences the immune functions of the T lymphocytes, impedes cytotoxic T-cells, etc. When its amounts are low, it cannot help with these processes.
Taking into consideration that there is still no cure for this disease and since psoriasis medications for management can be costly and risky for the overall health, one alternative approach is to try and increase your vitamin D levels, either through proper sun exposure or through quality supplements.
Dr. Michael Holic, who worked as a professor of dermatology and who also received an award for research achievement in psoriasis explains that the UV rays of the sun destroy the activated T-cells in the skin and thus, lower the cell turnover and the scaling and inflammation.
Other Health Advantages of Vitamin D
- According to a study from 2006, it lowers the chance for multiple sclerosis
- 2008 findings indicate that it may decrease the risk of heart illness
- 2010 research indicates that it fights off flu
- It is important for the regulation of mood and prevention of depression
Vitamin D Supplements
If you decide to take supplements in consultation with your physician, take vitamin D3, not the synthetic D2, together with magnesium and vitamin K2. Because vitamin D is fat-soluble, it is best absorbed when taken with a healthy fat. The K2 vitamin betters the movement of calcium into the needed parts of the body and it averts arterial hardening and calcification.