Study Claims Vitamin D, Fish Oil Supplements Can Help Counteract Autoimmune Disease

Researchers this week announced findings that vitamin D and fish oil supplements — two widely available and cheap treatments — can help to treat the wide illness category of autoimmune disorders.

The study, published in the journal BMJ, claimed that “vitamin D supplementation for five years … reduced autoimmune disease by 22%,” while omega 3 fatty acid supplements “reduced the autoimmune disease rate by 15%.”

The researchers, based in a variety of institutions out of Boston, Mass., noted that “autoimmune diseases, characterized by an inflammatory autoimmune response to self-tissues, are the third leading cause of morbidity in the industrialized world and a leading cause of mortality among women.”

Those diseases “are chronic conditions with increasing prevalence with age and major societal and economic burdens due to a lack of effective treatments,” the scientists said. 

The paper said that vitamin D had already been “inconsistently associated” with “reduced risk of several autoimmune diseases” in some cases, while omega 3 fatty acids reportedly “decrease systemic inflammation and ameliorate symptoms in some autoimmune diseases.”

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