Dear Editor:

I wish to inform the public of a possible association between diabetes, Vitamin D and calcium. This important relationship has been developed using clinical trial studies.

Recently scientists have been providing evidence that Vitamin D and calcium balance in the blood may play an important role in the development of diabetes.

These clinical studies have shown that a low level in the blood by one by-product of vitamin metabolism is often associated with impaired sugar tolerance and diabetes. Other studies have suggested that normal to high levels of calcium are inversely associated with body weight and fat deposition which are often indicators of diabetes.

These studies are exciting and of great importance to the general public as they indicate that, though more research needs to be undertaken, there are ways of detecting the possibility of diabetes before the onset of the disease and that simple lifestyle changes (more sun exposure, Vitamin D and calcium supplements, inclusion of more dairy and fresh fruits and vegetables into the diet) can greatly reduce the probability that a person will suffer from diabetes.

I urge patients to discuss this with their health care providers and to ask our elected representative to continue the funding for such important research.

Thank you very much,

K. Jones

Jim Thorpe