Vitamin D and people with depression

Treatment for vitamin D deficiency might prove beneficial for women experiencing depression symptoms. This is the suggestion of new research presented at The Endocrine Society's 94th Annual Meeting in Houston, US, which found such an approach brings significant improvements for females who suffered from the condition moderately to severely.

According to the investigators, correcting levels of this vitamin could be the reason why beneficial effects of depression are felt.

Sonal Pathak, an Endocrinologist at Bayheath Medical Center in Dover, Delaware, noted: "Vitamin D may have an as-yet-unproven effect on mood and its deficiency may exacerbate depression."

Dr Pathak noted a confirmation of this association could potentially improve the way in which depression is treated.

She added a cost-effective and simple way to assist those suffering from the condition - in conjunction with mainstream therapies already established - may be to screen at-risk depressed individuals for signs of a lack of vitamin D.

Chartered Psychologist Dr Hugh Koch comments: "This is very small, three-case study which gives interesting findings that could be the subject of larger sample studies. At present these suggested links between vitamin D and depression are anecdotal rather than reliable scientific findings from a controlled study."