Snore like a freight train? It may be linked to your vitamin D level if your nighttime honking is a symptom of sleep apnea, according to new research.
Eighteen million Americans suffer from sleep apnea, according to the National Sleep Foundation. It’s a disorder in which breathing is briefly and repeatedly interrupted during sleep when the muscles in the back of the throat fail to keep the airway open. In findings reported in the journal Sleep, Irish researchers reported a higher prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in patients with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
Researchers found that 98 percent of subjects with OSA were deficient in the vitamin, and that people with the most severe OSA had the greatest vitamin D deficiency. Although the study’s authors point out that rainy Dublin, which lies at a high latitude, has limited sunshine to help bodies generate vitamin D, other studies have shown similar findings.
Though the link between the vitamin and the condition seems clear, the relationship between the two is not, according to a clincialadvisor.com post about the study. Some clinicians believe that low levels of D can lead to weight gain, which can increase the risk of OSA. Others believe the relationship has something to do with regulating inflammation, which research suggests the vitamin can help reduce.