In Sacramento, there’s not enough sunlight to absorb enough vitamin D for some people. Now, a new University of California, Davis study published in January 2011 in the journal, Hormone and Metabolic Research on vitamin D status in Northern California residents with metabolic syndrome is the first to examine vitamin-D status in local patients. Also see the article, Study finds low vitamin-D levels in Northern California residents. What foods are high in vitamin D? One for example, might be almonds, among numerous other foods. Check out the article, Almond Nutrition. Almonds are rich in the vitamins and minerals that help build a healthy heart, according to Dr. Paul Davis, Ph.D, of the University of California, Davis.
Also, almonds are a great source for both vitamin D and calcium, are high in vitamin E, and make a great snack. One ounce of almonds contains 80 mg. of calcium. Check out the article, Foods Containing Vitamin D & Calcium. In the UC Davis study, scientists noted that Sacramento’s many hours of sunshine make the vitamin-D deficiency finding surprising to researchers. The study, entitled “Low vitamin D levels in North American adults with the metabolic syndrome,” was published online in November, 2010 and appears now in print in the January 2011 issue of the journal, Hormone and Metabolic Research.
Almost half the population worldwide has lower-than-optimal levels of vitamin D and researchers say the problem is worsening as people spend more time indoors. African-Americans seem at especially high risk as dark skin can make it harder for the body to absorb ultraviolet light. That’s why fitness activities should be part of women’s activities, especially for those indoors most of the day.
According to the Nov. 30, 2010 Science Blog article, “Study finds low vitamin-d levels in northern California residents with metabolic syndrome,” Researchers in Sacramento and Davis from the UC Davis Health System have found that compared with healthy controls, blood levels of vitamin D are significantly reduced in patients in the Sacramento area with metabolic syndrome, a constellation of disease risk factors that affects about one in three U.S. adults and predisposes them to diabetes, heart disease and stroke.
In spite of our great sun exposure in Northern California, 30 percent of patients with metabolic syndrome have vitamin-D deficiency, and even many subjects in the control group had inadequate levels. Check out the study at the UC Davis Health System.
Why are so many Sacramento consumers rushing to wolf down higher and higher doses of vitamin D3 supplements without knowing whether they are deficient? And why is there so much about vitamin D in the media these days? There are blood tests to determine whether you need extra vitamin D. And if you do, how do you know whether you have the genetic variant that processes vitamin D differently than most people?
Are there some people who shouldn’t be taking supplements containing vitamin D and just get what they need of the vitamin from healthy foods? According to a December 3, 2009 article in HealthDay Daily News, “Vitamin D May Be Tied to Heart Disease Via Genes,” if you have a specific gene variant that reduces vitamin D activation in the body and high blood pressure, according to a new study, you were found to be twice as likely as those without the variant to have congestive heart failure as well as the high blood pressure, the study found.
Also see the Dec 3, 2009 UPI article: Heart failure linked to vitamin D gene, (U.S. researchers linked congestive heart failure to a gene variant affecting vitamin D activation.) What does this study mean for consumers of vitamin supplements?
See the Reuters article, “Low vitamin D raises blood pressure in women: study.” The study funded by the U.S. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, published on September 23, 2009 was presented at a meeting of the American Heart Association in Chicago.
Early vitamin D deficiency may increase the long-term risk of high blood pressure in women at mid-life. The women in the latest blood pressure study lived in Tecumseh, Michigan, and were 24 to 44 years old with an average age of 38, when the research began.
Researchers in Michigan, who examined data on 559 women beginning in 1992, found that those with low levels of vitamin D were more likely to have high blood pressure 15 years later in 2007. The results of the study revealed that “younger white women with vitamin D deficiencies are about three times more likely to have high blood pressure in middle age than those with normal vitamin levels.”
Researchers measured vitamin D blood levels at the outset and took blood pressure readings once a year. In 2007, they compared systolic readings — the top number in blood pressure results that indicates the pressure within blood vessels when the heart beats.
More than 10 percent of women with vitamin D deficiencies had high blood pressure in 2007, versus 3.7 percent of those with sufficient levels. When the study began, 5.5 percent with deficiencies also had high blood pressure, compared to 2.8 percent with normal vitamin D.