It’s now common knowledge that Vitamin D is an essential vitamin, vital in regulating the absorption of phosphorus and calcium in our bones to keep them strong, but it has numerous other benefits that assist in prolonging life, and so low levels of the vitamin are linked to premature death.
One such benefit, say radiological experts from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, is the high possibility of vitamin D being one of the body’s main ways in which it protects itself from damage due to radiation.
This may also be related to the decreased risk of developing cancer if the body has sufficient levels of Vitamin D, showing a significantly lower likelihood of developing the condition with adequate levels. A deficiency in Vitamin D was prevalent in cancer patients during a study carried out by the Cancer treatment Centers of America.
In addition to this, another study undergone by researchers in the University of California-San Diego involved reviewing a previous 32 studies that analyzed the subjects’ vitamin D levels in the blood and subsequently, mortality rates. The studies included 566,583 subjects from 14 different countries, who had an average age of 55.
It was discovered that subjects with lower levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D (the main form of vitamin D found in human blood) were twice as likely to suffer from premature death, in comparison to those with higher levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D in the blood.
Furthermore, researchers concluded that those at risk of dying from an early death had a vitamin D blood level of 30 ng/ml, which was approximately half of the tested subjects, and that an estimated two thirds of the American population has a blood vitamin D level below 30 ng/ml.
The recommended daily intake for people aged between 1 to 70 is at least 600 IU (International units) of vitamin D.
“Vitamin D is safe when used in appropriate doses up to 4,000 International Units (IU) per day,” says Heather Hofflich, a professor in the UC San Diego School of Medicine’s Department of Medicine, who strongly advises her patients to check their 25-hydroxyvitamin D blood levels checked annually, as well as consulting a doctor before changing their intake of Vitamin D.
Although in the past study results have not demonstrated any clear links between the intake of Vitamin D and its many health benefits, more recent studies have indicated Vitamin D deficiencies are linked to brain damage, a lack of communication between cells, a weak immune system, the risk of developing multiple sclerosis and even the risk of a heart attack.