January 9, 2012
Science Daily/UT Southwestern Medical Center
Low levels of vitamin D have been linked to depression, according to psychiatrists.
"Our findings suggest that screening for vitamin D levels in depressed patients -- and perhaps screening for depression in people with low vitamin D levels -- might be useful," said Dr. E. Sherwood Brown, professor of psychiatry and senior author of the study, done in conjunction with The Cooper Institute in Dallas. "But we don't have enough information yet to recommend going out and taking supplements."
Vitamin D levels are now commonly tested during routine physical exams, and they already are accepted as risk factors for a number of other medical problems: autoimmune diseases; heart and vascular disease; infectious diseases; osteoporosis; obesity; diabetes; certain cancers; and neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases, multiple sclerosis, and general cognitive decline.