Heart Health: Foods Rich In Vitamin D May Protect Against Cardiovascular Issues; Study

Vitamin D-rich foods are an alternate source of the nutrient other than sunlight.

Vitamin D is an important nutrient that our body needs. Also called ‘sunshine vitamin’, this nutrient can be naturally derived from sunlight. However, deficiency of vitamin D in human body has been rising at an alarming rate for past few years. Many people resort to vitamin D supplements to fulfil their requirement of the nutrient. Deficiency of vitamin D may increase the risk of diabetes and led to weaker bones. Many studies have proved the efficacy of these supplements but they were never found to be effective for heart health.

A new study conducted by international researchers found out that diet rich in vitamin D may cause improvement in heart health.The results of the study that were published in the Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics suggested that intake of foods high in vitamin D content may have heart-protective effects. 

Vitamin D is an important prohormone for optimal intestinal calcium absorption for mineralization of bone. Because of this, there has been interest in evaluating other potential functions of vitamin D, particularly, in cardiovascular diseases (CVD). Cross-sectional studies have reported that vitamin D deficiency is associated with increased risk of CVD, including hypertension and heart failure.

The current study aimed to evaluate the association between dietary vitamin D intake and 10-year first fatal/nonfatal cardiovascular disease (CVD), conventional CVD risk factors and surrogate markers related to inflammation, coagulation, insulin resistance, liver and renal function

The study was carried out during 2001-2012 and studies 1,514 men and 1,528 women from the greater Athens area, in Greece. Cardiovascular issues like heart attack and hear stroke were found in 24%, 17%, and 12% of men and 14%, 10%, and 11% of women.

In contrast with vitamin D supplementation trials that have shown modest to neutral beneficial effects on heart health, this study revealed that increased vitamin D intake from food sources may protect against heart-related problems, especially in men.

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