Blood sugar problems? Might want to make sure you get your daily dose of D.
More research is needed to confirm a connection between blood sugar control and vitamin D levels. But in a study, people with type 2 diabetes had better success in lowering their blood sugar when they followed a diet that included extra vitamin D.
Better Blood Sugar Swill
In the study of middle-aged men and women, half the study participants drank vitamin-D-fortified yogurt drinks twice a day with lunch and dinner while the other half drank a placebo drink of just yogurt. After 12 weeks, the people in the vitamin D group not only had lower blood sugar but also showed fewer signs of insulin resistance. The vitamin D group even lost a bit of weight over the 12-week period! (Did you know peanut butter is good for your blood sugar, too? Check out 11 other surprisingly delicious foods that can help lower blood sugar.)
Good D Deeds
More research is needed to know for sure whether vitamin D may have a role in blood sugar control. And it's not clear whether other foods containing D -- or supplements -- would produce similar blood sugar benefits. But lots of other research suggests that D may help improve insulin sensitivity and may even be involved in helping regulate insulin secretion from the pancreas -- all important parts of blood sugar control. So be sure to get your fair share of vitamin D each day. In the study, the vitamin D drinkers were getting about 1,000 international units (IU) each day -- more than current government recommendations, but in line with what RealAge doctors suggest. RealAge doctors suggest people under 60 get 1,000 IU per day, but people over 60 should get more. (Find out why the RealAge docs recommend this amount of vitamin D.)
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ReferencesDaily consumption of vitamin D- or vitamin D + calcium-fortified yogurt drink improved glycemic control in patients with type 2 diabetes: a randomized clinical trial. Nikooyeh, B. et al., American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2011 Apr;93(4):764-771.
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