The online version of this article (https://doi.org/10.1007/s12020-017-1450-y) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
Vitamin D deficiency has been associated with an increased risk of hypothyroidism and autoimmune thyroid disease. Our aim was to investigate the influence of vitamin D supplementation on thyroid function and anti-thyroid antibody levels.
We constructed a database that included 11,017 participants in a health and wellness program that provided vitamin D supplementation to target physiological serum 25-hydroxyvitmain D [25(OH)D] concentrations (>100 nmol/L). Participant measures were compared between entry to the program (baseline) and follow-up (12 ± 3 months later) using an intent-to-treat analysis. Further, a nested case-control design was utilized to examine differences in thyroid function over 1 year in hypothyroid individuals and euthyroid controls.
More than 72% of participants achieved serum 25(OH)D concentrations >100 nmol/L at follow-up, with 20% above 125 nmol/L. Hypothyroidism was detected in 2% (23% including subclinical hypothyroidism) of participants at baseline and 0.4% (or 6% with subclinical) at follow-up. Serum 25(OH)D concentrations ≥125 nmol/L were associated with a 30% reduced risk of hypothyroidism and a 32% reduced risk of elevated anti-thyroid antibodies. Hypothyroid cases were found to have higher mean serum 25(OH)D concentrations at follow-up, which was a significant positive predictor of improved thyroid function.
The results of the current study suggest that optimal thyroid function might require serum 25(OH)D concentrations above 125 nmol/L. Vitamin D supplementation may offer a safe and economical approach to improve thyroid function and may provide protection from developing thyroid disease.
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- Physiological serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentrations are associated with improved thyroid function—observations from a community-based program
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