Add to the list of vitamin D benefits: protection against heart attack

Add to the list of vitamin D benefits: protection against heart attack

Summer’s here and the time is right for making the most of those strong rays of sunshine that your skin turns into vitamin D.

We’ve seen quite a bit of recent research that shows how adequate vitamin D levels can help prevent cancer. New research reveals that there may be heart benefits as well.

Harvard researchers compared health records in 900 men with no history of heart ailments, and about 450 men with a history of heart attack or heart disease. Blood samples were also examined to assess vitamin D3 levels.

Results showed a clear link between vitamin D deficiency and heart attack risk. In fact, the data revealed that heart attack risk might be cut in half when low vitamin D levels are doubled.

Lead author of the study, Edward Giovannucci, M.D., Sc.D., told NutraIngredients-USA that his team’s findings add support to the many health care professionals demanding higher official recommendations for daily intake of vitamin D.

Of course, exposure to direct sunlight should be limited to only a few minutes each day. Other sources of vitamin D include cod liver oil and vitamin D3 supplements. But talk to your doctor before adding any new supplements to your daily regimen.

“Low Vitamin D Levels May Raise Heart Attack Risk” Stephen Daniells, NutraIngredients-USA, 6/10/08,