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Vitamin D helps with chronic pain, fatigue

GLENVIEW, Ill., June 23 (UPI) -- An analysis of 22 clinical studies of patients with varied chronic pain and fatigue syndromes found almost all patients lacked vitamin D, U.S. researchers said.

Stewart B. Leavitt, editor of Pain Treatment Topics and author of the report, said when sufficient vitamin D supplementation was provided, the aches, pains, weakness and related problems in most of the patients either vanished or were at least helped to a significant extent.

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The peer-reviewed report by a panel of eight experts also said:

-- A surprising majority of people in many parts of the world do not get adequate vitamin D from sun exposure or foods. Why such deficiencies are associated with pain in some persons but not others is not always known.

-- The currently recommended dose of vitamin D -- up to 600 IU per day -- is outdated and too low. Most children and adults need at least 1000 IU per day, and people with chronic musculoskeletal pain would benefit from 2000 IU or more per day of supplemental vitamin D3, also called cholecalciferol.

-- Vitamin D supplements interact with very few drugs or other agents and are usually not harmful unless extremely high doses -- such as 50,000 IU or more -- are taken daily for an extended period.

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