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Vitamin D Deficiency Linked to Worse Cholesterol Ratio

A higher ratio of total cholesterol to HDL cholesterol is associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease. A recent study suggests that vitamin D deficiency may increase the risk of a higher ratio of total cholesterol to HDL cholesterol.


Participants in the study included 13,039 people with an average age of 57 who took part in the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities study. Vitamin D and lipid levels were measured at baseline, after 4 years and again after 8 years. The participants had a mean serum vitamin D level of 24 ng/ml at baseline. Vitamin D deficiency was defined as less than 20 ng/ml and optimal levels were defined as levels of at least 30 ng/ml.


After adjusting for age, gender, race, BMI, physical activity, smoking, and other factors, the researchers found that average total cholesterol to HDL cholesterol was 0.18 higher in people who were vitamin D deficient. Additionally, people that were vitamin d deficient had HDL cholesterol levels that were on average 3.02 mg/dl lower than those with optimal vitamin D levels.


There were no associations found between vitamin D levels and triglyceride or LDL cholesterol levels.


Researchers from Johns Hopkins University conducted the study. It was published online ahead of print on February 2, 2017, in the journal Nutrition.


Previous studies have associated vitamin D with improved lipid profiles in diabetics, lower risk of asthma and allergies in children, reducing the risk of skin damage, reducing the risk of osteoporosis, combating diabetes, lower risk of cognitive decline, and improving age-related macular degeneration.


Vitamin D can be found in milk, fortified cereals, fish, and eggs. Your body also processes vitamin D from the sun but it becomes harder for our bodies to process it as we age. A high quality vitamin D supplement is always a good option if you feel that you’re not getting enough through diet and sun.

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