LINK to Longevity and Vitamin D3 / Studies
The new vitamin D review comes from Philippe Autier, MD, and Sara Gandini, PhD.
Autier works for the International Agency of Research on Cancer in Lyon, France. Gandini works for the European Institute of Oncology in Milan, Italy.
Together, they analyzed the results of 18 vitamin D studies that included mortality rates.
More than 57,000 adults in the U.S., U.K., and Europe participated in the studies. Most of them were "frail" elders with low blood levels of vitamin D, write Autier and Gandini.
Participants were typically assigned to take vitamin D supplements or a placebo containing no vitamin D.
Their daily vitamin D doses ranged from 300 to 2,000 international units (IU), averaging 528 IU per day, in the form of ergocalciferol (vitamin D-2) or cholecalciferol (vitamin D-3).
Each study was designed differently, but on average, participants were followed for 5.7 years. During that time, 4,777 participants died of any cause.People taking vitamin D were 7% less likely to die during the studies. The precise reason for their lower death rate isn't clear, and the reviewers aren't recommending a specific vitamin D dose.
An editorial published with the study recommends more research on vitamin D's benefits.
LINK to Vitamin D3 Supplementation and General Health
Just consider these recent studies:
- At Boston University, after people with high blood pressure were exposed to UVA and UVB rays for three months, their vitamin D levels increased by more than 100% -- and more impressively, their high blood pressure normalized. "We've followed them now for nine months, and their hypertension continues to be in remission," says Holick, professor of medicine, physiology and biophysics at Boston University. One theory about how vitamin D reduces blood pressure: It decreases the production of a hormone called renin, which is believed to play a role in hypertension.
- In a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in December 2003, of more than 3,000 veterans (ages 50 to 75) at 13 Veterans Affairs medical centers, those who consumed more than 645 IU of vitamin D a day along with more than 4 grams per day of cereal fiber had a 40% reduction in their risk of developing precancerous colon polyps.
- In a report in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society in February 2004, researchers at the University of Basel in Switzerland showed that elderly women who took a vitamin D supplement plus calcium for three months reduced their risk of falling by 49% compared with consuming calcium alone. Those women who had fallen repeatedly in the past seemed to gain the most benefit from vitamin D.
- A study in the Jan. 13, 2004 issue of Neurology indicated that women who get doses of vitamin D that are typically found in daily multivitamin supplements -- of at least 400 international units -- are 40% less likely to develop multiple sclerosis compared with those not taking over-the-counter supplements.
Vitamin D: Vital Role in Your Health
Vitamin D deficiency can be harmful -- in fact, there are real benefits to increasing your Vitamin D.
Your D-Day Plan of Attack
Many vitamin D researchers are convinced the government's recommendations for adequate vitamin D intake are far below what your body really needs. Those guidelines call for 200 IU a day up to the age of 50, 400 IU from 51 to 70, and 600 IU over age 70. (SOME ARE RECOMMENDING 5000iu AS A MINIMUM AND SOME ADVOCATE 8000 TO 10,000 D3 IU DAILY)But, says Holick, studies show that to achieve blood levels of vitamin D that can protect you against chronic diseases, you need an optimal dose of 1,000 IU of vitamin D a day. The vitamin is well absorbed from foods like fortified milk and from vitamin pills, whether taken alone or in combination with other foods.
So how can you get enough of this overlooked vitamin? Most foods aren't filled to the brim with vitamin D -- far from it. You can get 425 IU in a 3-ounce serving of salmon, and 270 IU in 3.5 ounces of canned sardines. But most foods provide much more modest amounts of vitamin D, from egg yolks (25 IU per egg) to cheddar cheese (2.8 IU per ounce).
"You'll get 200 IUs of vitamin D by drinking two glasses of fortified milk," says Sandon, spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association. But at age 70, even reaching the government's recommended level of 600 IU from diet alone can be a challenge. "These people are probably not drinking six glasses of milk a day for various reasons, including a higher incidence of lactose intolerance in the elderly," she tells WebMD.
"We need more food fortification [with] vitamin D," says Susan Sullivan, DSc, RD, assistant professor in the department of food science and human nutrition at the University of Maine. "We need to make it easier for people to meet their vitamin D requirements through the food supply."
Some of that fortification is already happening. In addition to milk, a growing number of food manufacturers are adding vitamin D to yogurt, breakfast cereal, margarine, and orange juice. A cup of fortified orange juice, for example, contains 100 IU of vitamin D.
LINK To When To Take Vitamin D3 For Best Results
May 7, 2010 -- Taking your vitamin D supplement with the largest meal of the day may boost its absorption substantially, according to a new study.
Researchers from the Cleveland Clinic instructed 17 men and women, average age 64, whose blood levels of vitamin D were borderline insufficient despite taking supplements, to take their supplements with the largest meal of the day.
After two or three months, the study participants had about a 50% increase in blood levels of the vitamin, regardless of the dose they took.
Researchers Guy B. Mulligan, MD, and Angelo Licata, MD, had noticed that patients typically report taking the supplement either on an empty stomach or with a light meal.
Because the vitamin is fat-soluble, the researchers speculated that taking it with a big meal would improve absorption.
Vitamin D is crucial not only to maintain bone strength, but research now suggests it plays a role in immune system problems, cancer, and cardiovascular disease.
The researchers measured blood levels of the vitamin at the start of the study and two or three months later. Participants took a range of doses, and the researchers divided them into three groups: less than 50,000 IU a week, 50,000 IU, and more than 50,000 IU. The daily doses ranged from 1,000 IU to 50,000 IU.
A dose of 400 IU is termed adequate for people 51-70, and 600 IU for people 71 and older, as set by the Institute of Medicine, but some experts believe much more is needed, especially in older adults. The current upper tolerable level is set at 2,000 IU daily. The recommendations are under review and an update is expected this month.
At the study start, the average blood level of the form of vitamin D measured, 25(OH)D, was 30.5 nanograms per milliliter. By the end, it was 47.2 ng/mL. A level of 15 and higher is termed adequate by the Institute of Medicine for healthy people, but the study participants had a range of health problems, such as osteoporosis and thyroid problems.
Few foods contain vitamin D naturally, and some foods are fortified with it. Vitamin D synthesis is also triggered when the body is exposed to sunlight.