Vitamin D and diabetes

Vitamin D and Risk for Type 2 Diabetes in People With Prediabetes, (7th Feb 2023)



Vitamin D has many functions in the body,

including a role in insulin secretion and glucose metabolism.

Observational studies,

association between low level of vitamin D in the blood,

and high risk for developing diabetes.

So, does giving vitamin D to people who were at high risk for diabetes reduce the risk?

Authors searched 3 databases,

through 9 December 2022

Compare the use of vitamin D versus placebo for diabetes prevention,

in adults with prediabetes.

Meta analysis and reanalysis of pooled data

Trials were at low risk for bias


Over 3 years of follow-up

Vitamin D group

New-onset diabetes occurred in 22.7%

Placebo group

New-onset diabetes occurred in 25%

Translates to being 15% reduction

Number needed to treat to prevent one case of diabetes

30 adults with prediabetes to prevent 1 person from developing diabetes.

Risk reduction by blood levels

At least 125 nmol/L (≥50 ng/mL) group

50 to 74 nmol/L (20 to 29 ng/mL) group

Cholecalciferol reduced risk for diabetes by 76%

(hazard ratio, 0.24)

3-year absolute risk reduction of 18.1%

Vitamin D increased the likelihood of regression to normal glucose regulation by 30%

Doses used

20,000 units of cholecalciferol (vitamin D3) weekly

4000 units of cholecalciferol daily

0.75 micrograms of eldecalcitol, (synthetic analogue of vitamin D)

Adverse events

Rare, study could not draw any definite conclusions about safety

kidney stones




In adults with prediabetes,
vitamin D was effective in lowering the risk for developing diabetes.

By the Numbers: Diabetes in America


Total Diabetes

From 2001 to 2020,

diabetes prevalence significantly increased among over 18s

37.3 million people have diabetes

(11.3% of the US population).

28.7 million people have been diagnosed with diabetes.

8.5 million people who have diabetes have not been diagnosed

(do not know they have it)

Total Prediabetes

96 million US adults have prediabetes.

Cost of Diabetes (2017)

$327 billion,

$237 billion direct medical costs

$90 billion in lost productivity

Excess medical costs, $9,601 per person


UK prevalence

4.8 million (7%)

3.9 million diagnosed

1 million undiagnosed

5.3 million by 2025

People with type 2 diabetes

50% more likely to die prematurely

Two-and-a-half times more likely to. Develop heart failure

Twice more likely to have a heart attack

Obesity, sugars, carbohydrates, processed foods, exercise, vitamin D
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