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Suicide associated with low vitamin D

Hints that suicide is associated with low vitamin D:

  1. Suicide peaks in the Spring, when vitamin D values are lowest
  2. Suicide has increased while vitamin D has been decreasing
  3. Suicide higher in dark-skinned individuals (low vitamin D due to built-in sun protection)
  4. Suicide higher in prison (shut-ins have low levels of vitamin D)
  5. Suicide rate is higher at high latitudes (where vitamin D is less available)
    See Criteria to associate a health problem with low vitamin D

See also VitaminDWiki


People who attempted suicide were vitamin D deficient – Dec 2014

Suicidal patients are deficient in vitamin D, associated with a pro-inflammatory status in the blood
Psychoneuroendocrinology, Volume 50, December 2014, Pages 210–219
Cécile Grudet a cecile.grudet at med.lu.se. Johan Malm b, Åsa Westrin a, c, Lena Brundin d, e
a Department of Clinical Sciences, Lund, Psychiatry, Lund University, 221 85 Lund, Sweden
b Department of Laboratory Medicine, Section for Clinical Chemistry, Malmö, Lund University, 205 02 Malmö, Sweden
c Psychiatric Clinic, Lund, Region Skåne, Sweden
d Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine, College of Human Medicine, Michigan State University, Grand Rapids, MI, USA
e Laboratory for Behavioral Medicine, Van Andel Research Institute, Grand Rapids, MI, USA

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Low levels of vitamin D may play a role in psychiatric disorders, as cross-sectional studies show an association between vitamin D deficiency and depression, schizophrenia and psychotic symptoms. The underlying mechanisms are not well understood, although vitamin D is known to influence the immune system to promote a T helper (Th)-2 phenotype. At the same time, increased inflammation might be of importance in the pathophysiology of depression and suicide. We therefore hypothesized that suicidal patients would be deficient in vitamin D, which could be responsible for the inflammatory changes observed in these patients.

We compared vitamin D levels in suicide attempters (n = 59), non-suicidal depressed patients (n = 17) and healthy controls (n = 14). Subjects were diagnosed according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th edition, and went through a structured interview by a specialist in psychiatry. 25(OH)D2 and 25(OH)D3 were measured in plasma using liquid-chromatography–mass-spectrometry (LC–MS). We further explored vitamin D's association with plasma IL-1β, IL-6 and TNF-α.

Suicide attempters had significantly lower mean levels of vitamin D than depressed non-suicidal patients and healthy controls. 58 percent of the suicide attempters were vitamin D deficient according to clinical standard. Moreover, there was a significant negative association between vitamin D and pro-inflammatory cytokines in the psychiatric patients. Low vitamin D levels were associated with higher levels of the inflammatory cytokines IL-6 and IL-1β in the blood.

The suicide attempters in our study were deficient in vitamin D. Our data also suggest that vitamin D deficiency could be a contributing factor to the elevated pro-inflammatory cytokines previously reported in suicidal patients. We propose that routine clinical testing of vitamin D levels could be beneficial in patients with suicidal symptoms, with subsequent supplementation in patients found to be deficient.

 Download the PDF from VitaminDWiki.

Suicide increasing and is now the top cause of death of adults

Suicide has become the top cause of death for adults (15-49) around the world

Suicide rate increased by at least 20% in most US counties in a decade

Contextual Factors Associated With County-Level Suicide Rates in the United States, 1999 to 2016 JAMA Sept 2019
Has free PDF

Suicides increasing over the years, and peak in the Spring

No, Suicides Don't Rise During the Holidays Dec 2015
Pollen suspected, Vitamin D not mentioned

Suicide infographic


See also web - Vitamin D

See also web - Cholesterol

  • Serum lipid levels and suicidality: a meta-analysis of 65 epidemiological studies Jan 2016
    123% higher risk of suicide attempt - from 510,392 people
  • Review of above study by Dr. Grimes, Dec 2016
    "A comment from the authors, but not an observation from the study:"
    “an increasing number of reports raise the possibility that statins, a class of lipid-lowering agents, may be associated with deleterious cognitive, mood and behavioural adverse effects, including violence, depression and suicide, which have been attributed to the effect of statins’ cholesterol level reduction on brain function.”

Suicide associated with low vitamin D        

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ID Name Comment Uploaded Size Downloads
7286 Suicidal Dec 2014.pdf PDF admin 04 Nov, 2016 09:46 709.41 Kb 280
6240 Suicide Spring.jpg admin 11 Dec, 2015 18:53 64.60 Kb 2989
4406 Suicide infographic.jpg admin 25 Sep, 2014 12:21 318.54 Kb 3919
4392 Suicide T2.jpg admin 19 Sep, 2014 21:04 59.81 Kb 7171
4391 suicide.jpg admin 19 Sep, 2014 21:04 24.32 Kb 5407
4390 suicidal low D.pdf PDF 2014 admin 19 Sep, 2014 21:03 709.34 Kb 1447
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