Vitamin D deficiency may triple a person’s risk of high blood pressure, according to a study conducted by researchers from the University of Michigan School of Public Health.
“Our results indicate that early vitamin D deficiency may increase the long-term risk of high blood pressure in women at mid-life,” researcher Flojaune Griffin said.
The researchers recruited 559 Michigan white women who were between 24 and 44 years old when the study began in 1992. The participants’ vitamin D blood levels were measured at the beginning of the study and annually after that for fifteen years.
At the beginning of the study, 5.5 percent of the women who were deficient in vitamin D suffered from high blood pressure, compared with only 2.8 percent of the women who had sufficient levels of the vitamin. At the end of the study in 2007, 10 percent of the women in the deficiency group had high blood pressure, compared with only 3.7 percent in the “sufficient” group.
Vitamin D is known to play a crucial role in producing strong bones and teeth. Research increasingly suggests that it also helps regulate the immune system and protect against cancer, autoimmune disorders and heart disease.
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