Scientists at Massachusetts General Hospital recently discovered a “strong link” between vitamin D levels and opioid addiction.
This follows a previous study that found people could become addicted to tanning because of UV light exposure triggering the production of a hormone called beta-endorphin. When UV light hits the skin, beta-endorphins begin production. Beta-endorphins are involved in the high after exercise, and other feelings. Scientists hypothesize that this adaptation helped our ancestors maintain constant sun exposure, which helps vitamin D production, and rewarded them with good health.
We test all patients for converted and unconverted Vitamin D3. We offer I.V. therapies and oral protocols to address insufficiencies and deficiencies.
Scientists found a similar response to opioids in those with low vitamin D levels. After regularly receiving morphine, mice deficient in vitamin D experienced more “drug-seeking and addictive behaviors” and greater symptoms of withdrawal than those with normal vitamin D levels. These behaviors returned to normal when their vitamin D levels were brought up to normal levels. People with opioid use disorder (OUD) were also found to be more likely to have this deficiency.
Researchers hope this discovery can open a new door in addiction prevention and treatment. Vitamin D supplementation could be used to lower chances of opioid addiction with vulnerable, deficient people.
Vitamin D deficiency and genomic polymorphisms combine to create the perfect storm for addictions.
Haridy, R. (2021, June 14). Vitamin D deficiency linked to opioid addiction. New Atlas. https://newatlas.com/science/vitamin-d-deficiency-opioid-addiction-ultraviolet-light/?utm_source=New+Atlas+Subscribers&utm_campaign=229fec73dc-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2021_06_15_02_13&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_65b67362bd-229fec73dc-76698122.