Vitamin D May Prevent Bone Fractures in Older Adults, Many Americans Still D Deficient

According to a meta-analysis of 12 double-blind randomized controlled trials, higher doses of vitamin D are associated with a lower risk of bone fracture in older adults.


The study, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, concluded that non-vertebral fracture prevention with vitamin D is dose dependent, and a higher dose should reduce fractures by at least 20% for individuals aged 65 years or older. The review also hoped to determine whether the presence of calcium, along with vitamin D, would have a noticeable effect. The researchers found that vitamin D is effective with or without calcium supplementation.

In a separate study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, data from the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey found that three out of four Americans have vitamin D levels below what is necessary for optimal health.

“We found a marked increase in vitamin D deficiency over the past two decades,” said lead researcher Dr. Adit Ginde, an assistant professor of surgery at the University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine. “Over three out of every four Americans now have vitamin D levels below what we believe is necessary for optimal health.
African-Americans and Hispanics are at particularly high risk—nearly all have suboptimal levels.” Doctors associated with the study recommended more sunlight and a vitamin D dose above 200 IUs per day for proper vitamin D levels. They also recommended a dose of more than 400 IUs for adults over 65 years.

U.S. consumer sales of vitamins D, H, K and others increased 10.2% to $663 in 2007, according to NBJ estimates. NBJ expects that growth to rise in 2009 as vitamins D and K continue to garner positive press and grow in popularity.

Related NBJ links:
Can Vitamin D Help Avoid a C-Section?
Calcium and Vitamin D May Not Reduce Blood Pressure
The New Must-Have for Kids: Vitamin D Supplements

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