Vitamin D Deficiency can Lead to Early Death
It is commonly known that a vitamin D deficiency can lead to illness, but according to recent findings it also could lead to early death.
Vitamin D helps regulate the body’s absorption of calcium and phosphorus in bones, and can also strengthen the immune system, helps transmit nerve messages throughout the body and helps fight off viruses.
According to findings published in June by a University of California-San Diego School of Medicine research team in the American Journal of Public Health,people with low blood levels of vitamin D are twice as likely to die prematurely.
Earlier UC-San Diego findings also show that a low level of the vitamin can predict a higher risk of postmenopausal breast cancer, while another study released by the University of Kentucky in December indicates that low vitamin D can damage the brain.
The death assessment is the result of analysis on 32 previous studies that examined vitamin D levels – specifically 25-hydroxyvitamin D, the primary form found in human blood — and mortality rates. The average age of study participants was 55 in 14 countries with 566,583 subjects, according to a UC-San Diego statement.
Dr. Cedric Garland, professor in the Department of Family and Preventive Medicine at UC-San Diego and lead author of the study, reports the blood level amount of vitamin D associated with about half the death rate was 30 ng/ml.
Foods with the highest vitamin D content include salmon, mackerel and other high-fat fish, according to Naturalnews.com.
He also noted that two-thirds of the U.S. population has an estimated blood level of vitamin D below 30 ng/ml.
Researchers now say that vitamin D supplements are appropriate at doses up to 4,000 International Units, but caution that patients need to consult their physicians before taking supplements.