By Sylvia Booth Hubbard
Taking vitamin D combined with calcium can reduce mortality in the elderly, according to a Danish study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. The study's suggestion of an increased lifespan is only one of many benefits now being attributed to the "sunshine" vitamin, which is receiving increased recognition for its overall role in maintaining good health.
The study pooled data from eight randomized controlled trials, each including more than 1,000 participants. Almost 90 percent were women whose median age was 70. The patients were randomized to receive either vitamin D supplements alone or vitamin D with calcium.
During the three-year study, deaths were reduced by 9 percent in the groups treated with the vitamin D/calcium supplement. The researchers decided that the lower number of deaths wasn't due to a lower number of fractures, but represented a beneficial effect that went beyond the reduced risk of fracture.
Read more: Vitamin D With Calcium Increases Lifespan
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