“Solar” Armenia’s Population Has a Severe Deficiency of Vitamin D: Expert

“Solar” Armenia’s Population Has a Severe Deficiency of Vitamin D: Expert



Recently a severe vitamin D deficiency is noticeable among the population of “Solar Armenia”. This was informed to NEWS.am Medicine reporter during the conversation with Hovhannes Manvelyan, M.D. Professor, head of the Neurological Department of YSMU, head of the Neurological Clinic in “Astghik” MC.

As to him, the research on 3000 people’s database reveals that the 2/3 of them have very low level of vitamin D,  and the 1/3 – extremely low. Only 10 people had normal level that had mainly come from other countries and had passed a vitamin D treatment.

As noted by Hovhannes Manvelyan, there are several reasons for the lack of vitamin D. First of all, though we live in a “solar” country, we spend very little time in the sun: we go to work in the early morning when there is no sun, and in the evening we come back when the sun is set, and we also avoid the sunlight. Besides, the vitamin D formation is prevented by the food we use which contains large amount of steroids and antibiotics, as well as some daily medications. For this reason, the vitamin D deficiency is obvious also among the rural population; though, unlike the urban dwellers they spend more time in the sun.“Today it is a real healthcare and demographic problem for Armenia and the vitamin D screening should be introduced”, said he.

What Is the Role of Vitamin D?

We all know from school textbooks that vitamin D is synthesized in the human skin by the influence of UV rays, it does not enter the body with food and it is necessary to make the calcium penetrate into the bones.

But, as noted by Hovhannes Manvelyan, the functions of vitamin D are more inclusive, because not only bone tissues are created but also the male hormones and sleep hormones (melatonin) are synthesized by its influence. “So, the important hormonal role of vitamin D is severely ignored”, said he.

Vitamin D deficiency also causes pain symptoms, chronic pain, and chronic fatigue. The role of vitamin D is great in neurology. “There is a proved connection between neuropathological diseases and vitamin D deficiency.  It is proved that in case of patients with multiple sclerosis, the lack of vitamin D may lead to aggravation. Extremely low indexes of vitamin D are registered among patients with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. There are already scientific evidences that vitamin D contributes to the solution of collected proteins – amyloid-betas in brain for brain diseases. Consequently, by simply testing and restoring the vitamin D amount the patient’s state may be improved, as well as certain diseases may be prevented,” mentioned the specialist.

Vitamin D level may be merited by delivering the venous blood to relevant laboratories. In order to control the vitamin level we should run a healthy life, often walk in the sun and regulate a diet which will include foods for providing the vitamin D appropriation. In case of severe deficiency, the amount of vitamin D should be replenished by medication acceptance but only by strictly following the portion as prescribed by doctor.

Hovhannes Manvelyan added that if we observe the vitamin D deficiency only as the reason for osteoporosis we limit the problem. “Moreover, the osteoporosis is treated by not restoring the vitamin D amount, but by other medications. Namely, the medical justice is broken here and no one tells to restore the vitamin level to strengthen your bones. A completely different spectrum of medication is offered. Meanwhile, if there is no vitamin D, all the other drugs are powerless to enrich the bone tissues with calcium,” said he.

Particularly, as noted by the doctor, people accept calcium without vitamin D which overlays the vessels instead of penetrating into the bones: a calcification of aorta, renal arteries and brain vessels occurs.

“Our advice to everyone: control your vitamin D level and you will be healthy for long years,” concluded Hovhannes Manvelyan.