Up until recently, it was known that Vitamin D deficiency could lead to softening of the bones and even rickets. But now, a new study has revealed that Vitamin D deficiency can result into other diseases that can lead to an early death.
This is the first time ever, that a study has established a relationship between increased mortality and a Vitamin D deficiency. Co-author of the study and medical doctor at Herlev Hospital in Copenhagen, Denmark, Shoaib Afzal, dad this to say about the study:
We can see that genes associated with low Vitamin D levels involve an increased mortality rate of 30 percent and, more specifically, a 40 percent higher risk of cancer-related deaths.
The bulk of Vitamin D is taken by humans from the sun. When the sun hits our epidermis, our skin produces Vitamin D; without the sun, we would get the vitamin from fatty fish, fortified milk and certain mushrooms. It is advised that people spend around 20 minutes in the sun every day, for the enough Vitamin D to be made to ensure the proper function of the body.
The present study involved around a whopping 96,000 people from Denmark. The levels of Vitamin D were measured using blood samples; specific genetic defects were also examined to follow how Vitamin D deficiency impacts a person’s health.
The people involved in the Vitamin D deficiency study were followed from 1976 to 2014. Another co-author of the study, Borge Nordestgaard, concluded that:
Our study shows that low Vitamin D levels do result in higher mortality rates.
The researchers also found that the genes associated with low Vitamin D levels had 30% increased mortality rate and also a 40% higher cancer-related death rate. With this strong percentage, it is easy to reach the conclusion that Dr. Nordestgaard reached.
However, scientists do wonder if the Vitamin D deficiency was causing the issues in people, or if people already had health problems that were causing the Vitamin D deficiency. More studies are needed to reach a clearer result.