Psoriasis is a common chronic skin disorder, likely caused by an autoimmune response, and is characterized by red scaly patches on the surface of the skin. If it comes with inflammatory arthritis, it is called “psoriatic arthritis.” Pro golfer Phil Mickelson was recently diagnosed with it. It is difficult to get firm numbers on just how many people have the condition.
Now, vitamin D is an absolutely vital element of your natural health. The new study reports a high prevalence of vitamin-D insufficiency and deficiency among patients with psoriatic arthritis. Vitamin-D deficiency is a widespread concern these days, particularly in northern regions. Evidence shows that vitamin-D deficiency is more common in individuals living at higher latitudes during the winter, suggesting that a lack of sunlight is the cause. What’s more is that many studies report reduced levels of vitamin D in patients with autoimmune diseases — such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus.
The researchers set out to determine the prevalence of D deficiency in patients with psoriatic arthritis. They evaluated 258 patients during the winter and 214 patients during the summer in two geographically diverse locations.
In the northern site, 56% of psoriatic arthritis sufferers had insufficient D levels in the winter — 59% in the summer. About 51% of patients at the southern location had insufficient levels in the winter — and 62% of patients in the summer.
How about deficiency (which is worse)? In the northern climate, it was three percent in the winter only. In the southern areas, it was four percent in winter and one percent in summer.
All in all, they found that vitamin-D levels in these patients have nothing to do with geography or season. They must now find out if psoriatic arthritis patients need more vitamin-D intake to maintain healthy levels than that recommended for the general population.