April 26, 2012We all know that vitamin D plays a vital role in bone health by allowing the body to absorb calcium and protecting against bone fractures. Recently researchers found that among 889 adult patients treated for a bone fracture at one trauma center, levels of vitamin D were insufficient in seventy-eight percent of the patients, low levels can also cause rickets in children and fragile, misshapen bones in adults. Recent research indicates that vitamin D has even more far-reaching effects on our health and deserves a lot more credit for our overall health than we've been giving it! This research suggests that raising levels of vitamin D may protect against many chronic or life-threatening diseases such as heart disease, high blood pressure, cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and other autoimmune diseases. Studies have also shown that people with higher levels of vitamin D have a lower risk of disease; vitamin D deficiency been linked to breast cancer, colon cancer, prostate cancer, heart disease, depression, and weight gain! Additionally, the Vitamin D Council, a research-based group promoting vitamin D deficiency awareness, proposes that vitamin D can assist in treatment or prevention of autism, cancer, chronic pain, depression, diabetes, heart disease, high bloodpressure, flu, neuromuscular diseases, and osteoporosis. That is a pretty impressive list! Vitamin D is a fat-soluble essential nutrient that naturally enters the body primarily through the skin when ultraviolet B radiation in sunlight stimulates production of previtamin D. Previtamin D is converted to the biologically active form of vitamin D in the kidneys. Unfortunately, different factors are causing a rise in people with vitamin D deficiencies:
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