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Nutrition & bone health

Benefits for heart health and circulation

Dr. Susan E. Brown, PhDBy Dr. Susan E. Brown, PhD

Heart disease, our #1 cause of death, is also strongly influenced by vitamin D. The heart, as other muscles, is weakened by lack of this muscle-builder. Further, activated vitamin D works to maintain blood pressure, suppress artery-damaging inflammation, and protect the vessels from calcification in a dose-dependent manner. As a result, vitamin D is inversely associated with heart attacks, strokes, high blood pressure, decreased artery protective apolipoprotein A-1, and heart disease deaths.

Sunlight and its biochemical end-product, vitamin D, enhance heart health in many ways. Even exposure to tanning beds transmitting vitamin D-producing UVB radiation has been found to reduce blood pressure by researchers in both the US and the Netherlands. In addition, while working with heart disease patients, Dr. Michael Holick of Boston University was able to improve heart strength with a program of three weekly exposures to UVB from tanning beds.

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Original Publication Date: 01/15/2009
Last Modified: 07/11/2014
Principal Author: Dr. Susan E. Brown, PhD