National Psoriasis Foundation

Vitamin D and Psoriasis

June 8, 2011

Vitamin D has been in the news quite a bit lately. Almost every magazine and every news channel had something to say about vitamin D. Most of the scientific reports are contradictory to each other about vitamin D and overall health. We certainly know one thing and that’s the sales of vitamin D supplements are sky rocketing.

Despite all that hype about vitamin D in news media, there is almost no information on vitamin D and its impact on psoriasis. As usual, we don’t have answers about how vitamin D supplements affect psoriasis. We know that Narrow Band UVB (NBUVB) treatments for psoriasis effectively increase serum vitamin D levels. Also, the same study from Ireland reported that up to 75% of Irish patients with psoriasis had low levels of serum vitamin D during winter time.

On the other hand, topical vitamin D treatment for psoriasis has been around for a long time. Topical vitamin D has been shown to be beneficial in alleviating psoriasis plaques. Topical vitamin D is also known to work with topical steroids together. Also, long term topical vitamin D treatment is useful without the long term side effects of topical steroids.

Lately, we are also finding that topical vitamin D maybe helpful in preventing psoriatic lesions. Of course, this will require further research to be confirmed scientifically.

Selected Food Sources of Vitamin D:

  • Cod liver oil
  • Salmon (sockeye)
  • Mackerel
  • Tuna Fish canned in water
  • Milk, non-fat, reduced fat, and whole vitamin D fortified
  • Orange juice fortified with vitamin D
  • Yogurt fortified with 20% of the Daily Value of vitamin D
  • Margarine fortified
  • Egg, vitamin D is found in the yolk
  • Swiss cheese

Leon Kircik, M.D.

Dr. Kircik is a Board Certified Dermatologist who graduated with AOA Honors from State University of New York at the Health Sciences Center at Brooklyn after completing his undergraduate work with Phi Beta Kappa at New York University.

He completed a Mohs Micrographic Surgery and Cutaneous Oncology Fellowship under the auspices of Dr. Frederick Mohs at the University of Wisconsin after completing his dermatology residency at State University of New York in Buffalo.

He currently teaches at Indiana University Medical Center as an Associate Clinical Professor of Dermatology. He is also the Medical Director of Derm Research, PLLC and Physicians Skin Care, PLLC in Louisville, Kentucky. He has been the principal investigator of numerous clinical trials for psoriasis, acne, rosacea, atopic dermatitis, skin cancers, and actinic keratosis, just to name a few.

Dr. Kircik is an author of many scientific articles, abstracts and posters. He has lectured extensively nationally and internationally on all aspects of dermatologic conditions. In addition, he also serves on the advisory boards of several pharmaceutical companies as a consultant. He volunteers for multiple local and national medical society committees.


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