Sunlight has long been known to aid in reducing the effects of psoriasis in those of us that are afflicted with the disease. This new study shows that it may go one step further and actually help by increasing the vitamin D levels in the body.
New research suggests increasing vitamin D intake could reduce the symptoms of chronic inflammatory skin condition psoriasis.
Psoriasis is a relatively common condition, affecting an estimated two to four per cent of the population. It is characterised by reddened, raised, scaly patches of skin, which commonly occur on the elbows, knees and scalp but can affect any part of the body. Psoriasis can develop at any age and tends to be a lifelong condition. For many people, it fluctuates in extent and severity, and can be challenging to manage despite the array of treatments on offer.
The Massey University study aimed to determine whether vitamin D supplementation improves psoriasis when compared with those taking placebo capsules. Dr Michelle Ingram, who conducted the research as part of her PhD in Nutritional Science says, “This study was partly motivated by observations that some people with psoriasis report a reduction in symptoms during the summer months, when vitamin D production in the skin is usually at its highest. Vitamin D incorporated into a cream or ointment is also a relatively effective treatment for psoriasis, yet no one had looked into whether vitamin D supplementation might be of similar benefit.”