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Vitamin D and Fatty Liver

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) has become the most common form of chronic liver disease in Western countries with a prevalence as high as 30%, already exceeding viral hepatitis and alcoholic fatty liver disease. Emerging evidence suggests that vitamin D may play a role in the pathogenesis of NAFLD.

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin formed in the skin from 7-dehydrocholesterol during exposure to solar ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation. Although vitamin D can be derived from the diet, few foods naturally contain vitamin D, such as oily fish. Vitamin D from the skin or from diet is metabolised in the liver to 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D], which is the major circulating metabolite and the most widely used indicator of vitamin D stores. 25(OH)D is metabolised in the kidneys to the biologically active form 1,25(OH)2D, which exerts its functions through binding to its nuclear receptor (vitamin D receptor, VDR).

Within the last two decades, VDR has been shown to be present not only in primary target tissues such as bone, kidney and intestine, but also in many other tissues, including the immune and endocrine systems, muscles, brain and liver, therefore expanding the role of vitamin D beyond the skeletal system.

LabFlorida offers comprehensive Vitamin D testing.