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Behavior Cardio-Vascular

Make the most of winter sunshine to keep heart healthy

10 years, 5 months ago

1432  0
Posted on Nov 19, 2008, 4 a.m. By Rich Hurd

Scientists are encouraging people to make the most of winter sunshine in order to keep vitamin D levels as high as possible in order to boost their cardiovascular health.

Scientists are encouraging people to make the most of winter sunshine in order to keep vitamin D levels as high as possible in order to boost their cardiovascular health.

Professor Sue Penckofer and colleagues conducted a review of studies linking vitamin D deficiency to cardiovascular disease. Their findings revealed that vitamin D deficiency is linked to ischemic heart disease, hypertension, myocardial hypertrophy, diastolic heart failure, and the metabolic syndrome, and is associated with a 30% to 50% higher risk of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality.

Vitamin D deficiency is a problem for people living in high latitude countries. It is particularly prevalent in the winter months because days are shorter and people spend more time indoors, however advice to use sun block and avoid exposure to the sun has resulted in many people suffering from chronic vitamin D deficiency.

The authors concluded: “Randomized trials should be designed to target specific physiological concentrations of 25(OH)D…to confirm epidemiological observations that the provision of a simple, well-tolerated, and inexpensive correction of hypovitaminosis D [vitamin D deficiency] could favorably affect the morbidity and mortality of the most common cardiovascular diseases.”

Walli DE, Penckofer S, Sizemore GW. The "Sunshine Deficit" and Cardiovascular Disease. Circulation. 2008;118:1476-1485. doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.107.713339

 

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