Does vitamin D deficiency contribute to increased rates of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes in African Americans

American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 03/03/2011

Harris SS – The associations reported from the observational studies show that vitamin D supplementation could potentially have a strong preventive effect on some of the conditions such as type 2 diabetes (T2D) and some forms of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and hypertension and could reduce race–related disparities in their prevalence.

  • African Americans have higher rates of type 2 diabetes (T2D) and some forms of cardiovascular disease (CVD) than do European Americans.
  • African Americans also have much higher rates of vitamin D deficiency.
  • There is emerging evidence that vitamin D deficiency may be a risk factor for hypertension, T2D, and CVD, but the extent to which racial disparities in disease rates are explained by racial differences in vitamin D status is uncertain.
  • Despite a large number of observational studies and a limited number of clinical trials that examined 25–hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] concentrations as a potential determinant of CVD and T2D or its precursors, it remains uncertain whether improving vitamin D status would reduce risk of these conditions in the general US population or in African Americans specifically.

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