Low vitamin D linked to arterial stiffness

NEW light has been shed on the link between vitamin D and cardiovascular disease (CVD) in a study showing patients with low serum levels of the hormone have increased arterial stiffness and endothelial dysfunction.

US researchers checked the vitamin D levels of 550 asymptomatic patients, finding an association between insufficiency and heightened CVD risk regardless of BMI, cholesterol and race.

“Our findings of increased arterial stiffness and endothelial dysfunction with low 25(OH)D provide a mechanistic explanation of how depressed vitamin D status… might predispose individuals to a higher risk of CVD and adverse events,” the authors said.

They found that among 42 patients whose vitamin D insufficiency resolved during the six-month study period, arterial stiffness also improved.

Professor Peter Ebeling, head of endocrinology at Western Health, Melbourne, said the research was an important article “looking at