Vitamin D supplements and calcium supplements have been in the news a lot this week, mainly after a US Preventive Services Task Force guideline was issued indicating that the vitamins did little or nothing to prevent osteoporosis-related fractures in older women not residing in an assisted living facility.
But another study on vitamin D and calcium supplements is out, and this one indicates some very compelling benefits for older folk, demonstrating a unique benefit in increasing lifespan.
While the other research made some mention of Vitamin D supplements, calcium supplements and heart attack risk, a study published out of Denmark in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism reviewed data from eight previous clinical studies on the effects of Vitamin D and calcium supplements.
Lead researcher Dr. Lars Rejnmark explained that the type of study he led examining Vitamin D and calcium supplements provides the best data, and said to Reuters in an email that the 9% risk in mortality was similar to that of certain efficient drugs used in seniors such as statins:
“In my view, a 9 percent reduced mortality in the general population of elderly is of major importance… Except for stopping smoking,” he added, “there are not many other known interventions that are capable (of) such a reduction in the risk of death.”
Rejnmark noted that supplements such as Vitamin D and calcium supplements have indeed been tied to higher heart risks in older adults, but that it wasn’t clear whether the supplements themselves were to blame for the increased risk.