Vitamin D and the human environment: Scotland as a limit “case study” on how the environment can affect (negatively) human health!

Written by Angelo

Categories: supplements | Pills | Healthcare

July 4 2015

Vitamin D and the human environment: Scotland as a limit “case study” on how the environment can affect (negatively) human health!

Adaptation: Angel.

Scotland

Today we present a beautiful work with completely acceptable considerations.

Man has always lived respecting the rhythm of the seasons by exposing himself to ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation and has adapted with complex processes of a biological nature and with different cultural traits (for example. skin pigmentation) in order to ensure adequate levels of vitamin D. The complex and rapid perturbations resulting from changes in human and cultural behavior (or both) have had unforeseen and unpleasant consequences for health.

Scotland is an excellent case study for describing the changing nature of human biocultural adaptation to low UVB exposure environments.

The occupation of Scotland after the last Pleistocene glaciation, around 14.000, was made possible by the maximum depigmentation of the skin (facilitated by selective pressures).

Depigmentation served to maximize the biosynthesis of vitamin D3. In addition, the populations ate a diet rich in foods containing vitamin D.

About 5.000 years ago there were variations for human subsistence and diet: the introduction of agriculture and pasturing began. This drive for change has accelerated significantly over the past 200 years, through industrialization and urbanization.

The resulting relocation of people, daily activity patterns, behavior and diet, led to reduced exposure to UVB rays and reduced consumption of foods rich in vitamin D. This upset the "compromise of vitamin D", a adaptive complex established in Scotland during the Mesolithic and Neolithic.

In this study we describe the environment of Scotland from a UVB remote sensing point of view. These data were interpolated with information from the archaeological record to try to describe the vitamin D trade-off in this country.

The variations that occurred as a result of urbanization and dietary change (consumption of blue fish) to human UVB exposure were traced. (very low levels of vitamin D among the population).

Vitamin D deficiency contributes to an increase in the prevalence of certain diseases in Scotland, including that of autoimmune multiple sclerosis, a disabling neurodegenerative disease caused by central nervous system demyelination. These conditions create a "imperfect stormWhich should guide the attention of experts and policy makers concerned concerning public health in order to improve the general health conditions of the population.

Reference:
Hum Biol. 2013 Aug; 85 (4): 529-52.
The human environment and the vitamin D compromise: Scotland as a case study in human biocultural adaptation and disease susceptibility.
Chaplin, Jablonski
link: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25019187

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