Vitamin D has had an extraordinary amount of attention and research over the past year that substantiates adding it to your daily diet will help you stay healthier. While vitamin D deficiency is linked to everything from obesity and diabetes to heart disease and death, a recent large scale study has demonstrated that supplements could confer substantial survival benefit, specifically in patients with documented deficiency.

The University of Kansas study published in the November issue of the of the American Journal of Cardiology analyzed data on 10,899 patients. Researchers found that 70 percent of the patients were deficient in vitamin D and at higher risk for heart disease. This deficiency nearly doubled the patients’ risk of dying, whereas correcting the deficiency with supplements lower their likelihood of death by 60 percent.

The biggest statistically significant results occurred in patients who were vitamin D deficient at the start of the study. Using the standard 20(OH) test, experts recommend that serum levels of vitamin D be at least 30 nanograms per  milliliter, with optimum levels between 50 to 70 nanograms per milliliter to maintain good health.

SOURCE: The American Journal of Cardiology, online November 7, 2011.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22071212

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