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Sunday, November 06, 2011

Vitamin D Study Suggests No Mortality Benefit for Older Women

Another bad day for the cure du jour.
A study of postmenopausal women found no significant mortality benefit from vitamin D after controlling for health risk factors such as abdominal obesity. The only exception was that thin-waisted women with low vitamin D levels might face some risk. The results agree with advice issued last year by the Institute of Medicine that cautioned against vitamin D having a benefit beyond bone health.

Doctors agree that vitamin D promotes bone health, but a belief that it can also prevent cancer, cardiovascular disease and other causes of death has been a major health controversy. Consistent with advice issued last fall by the Institute of Medicine, a new study finds that vitamin D did not confer benefits against mortality in postmenopausal women after controlling for key health factors such as abdominal obesity.

"There's not enough evidence to do anything about vitamin D levels if it's not in regard to bone health.""What we have is clinical trial evidence that for the most part vitamin D doesn't seem to be helpful for conditions where people thought it might," said study lead author Charles Eaton, professor of family medicine and of epidemiology in the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and a physician at Memorial Hospital in Pawtucket, R.I. "The best we can tell is that there isn't an association. Once we took into account these other factors, high levels didn't provide a benefit and low levels didn't put you at risk."
And remember you heard it here first that Vitamin D was likely overrated.

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