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The Life-Extending Role of Vitamin D

Posted Apr 09 2012 10:12pm
Posted on 2012-04-09 06:00:01 in Cardio-Vascular | Diabetes | Dietary Supplementation | Vitamins |
The Life-Extending Role of Vitamin D

Previously, vitamin D deficiency has been linked to osteoporosis, fractures, autoimmune diseases, infectious diseases, and cardiovascular disease. Additionally, growing evidence suggests that vitamin D may reduce the incidence of several types of cancer as well as diabetes. James L. Vacek, from the University of Kansas (Kansas, USA), and colleagues studied how vitamin D levels and supplementation may affect disease risk and mortality in 10,899 peo men and women, average age 58 years. Each subject was classified as to their vitamin D level, and categorized as deficient if the blood levels were lower than 30 ng/mL. With more than 70% of the participants classified as vitamin D deficient, the researchers noted that deficiency associated with significantly higher incidence of cardiovascular-related diseases such as hypertension, coronary artery disease, and diabetes. Additionally the risk of all-cause mortality was 164% higher in those subjects with vitamin D deficiency. Notably, the team observed that vitamin D supplementation associated with a 61% increase in survival, among study subjects.  Whereas the study authors report that: “vitamin D deficiency was associated with a significant risk of cardiovascular disease and reduced survival,” that: "Vitamin D supplementation was significantly associated with better survival, specifically in patients with documented deficiency.”

James L. Vacek, Subba Reddy Vanga, Mathew Good, Sue Min Lai, Dhanunjaya Lakkireddy, Patricia A. Howard   “Vitamin D Deficiency and Supplementation and Relation to Cardiovascular Health.” American Journal of Cardiology Vol. 109, Issue 3, Pages 359-363.

Vitamin D supplements may reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes, and also reduce the risk of all-cause mortality.
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244. Salad Smarts
Nitric oxide (NO) is an important molecule that helps maintain the contractility and health of vascular smooth muscle cells. A number of previous studies have linked vascular pathology to a decreased level of NO. It is speculated that approaches that increase the availability of NO could help protect vascular health.

NO is synthesized from arginine by an enzyme called nitric oxide synthase (NOS). Brian Zuckerbraun, from the University of Pittsburgh (Pennsylvania, USA), and colleagues, studied a lab animal model of vascular injury.
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