Here’s yet another reason to make sure you get enough vitamin D. It may protect you from heart disease.
Researchers looked at more than 27,000 healthy adults 50 and older and found that the majority were deficient in the vitamin. About two-thirds had less than healthy vitamin D levels, and many were extremely deficient.
Less than two years later, the researchers found, those who had extremely low levels of the vitamin were almost twice as likely to have died or suffered a stroke. They also had more coronary artery disease and were twice as likely to have developed diabetes and high blood pressure.
The findings, which were presented at the American Heart Association conference in Orlando, don’t prove that lack of vitamin D causes heart disease; they only suggest a link between the two. But cardiologists are starting to pay increasing attention because of what they’re learning about vitamin D’s roles in regulating blood pressure, inflammation and glucose control — all critical body processes in cardiovascular health.
The next step for researchers is to figure out whether vitamin D deficiency actually causes disease.