Doubts Cast Over Benefits of Vitamin D Against Cancer, Heart Disease
Supplements of vitamin D don’t help in preventing chronic diseases unrelated to the bones, a new study has challenged. Low vitamin D levels are a consequence of ill health and not a cause as it was thought prior.
Lack of vitamin D has been linked to slew of medical conditions that include anemia, depression, pain and even brain damage. Previous study have projected it as one of the important factor in offering protection against cancer, heart related disease and Parkinson’s.
Contrastingly, researchers from the International Prevention Research Institute in Lyon has doubted the previous findings.
"“If the health benefits of high vitamin D concentrations shown by data from observational studies are not reproduced in randomized trials (the gold standard method for assessing a causal relation between an exposure and an outcome) then the relation between vitamin D status and disorders are probably the result of confounding or physiological events involved in these disorders,” explained lead author Prof. Philippe Autier in a press release.
Around data of 290 prospective observational studies were studied upon by the researchers. In addition they also considered 172 randomized trials that were completed before December 2012.
In their research they found that observational studies supported the benefits of high vitamin D concentration. But randomized trials did not confirmed the same findings.
“What this discrepancy suggests is that decreases in vitamin D levels are a marker of deteriorating health. Aging and inflammatory processes involved in disease occurrence and clinical course reduce vitamin D concentrations, which would explain why vitamin D deficiency is reported in a wide range of disorders,” added prof. Autier in the paper.
The study is published in the medical journal of The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology.