Vitamin D status and changes in cardiovascular risk factors: a prospective study of a general population

Cardiology. 2012;123(1):62-70. doi: 10.1159/000341277. Epub 2012 Sep 12.


Objectives: A low vitamin D level has been associated with increased cardiovascular disease risk but possible mechanisms remain unclear. We investigated the association between vitamin D levels and 5-year changes in blood pressure, lipid profile and incidence of the metabolic syndrome, hypertension and hypercholesterolemia.

Methods: A random sample of 6,784 individuals aged 30-60 years from a general population was investigated in the Inter99 study in 1999-2001. Vitamin D (serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D) was measured at baseline by high-performance liquid chromatography, and 4,330 individuals participated at the 5-year follow-up and were included in the present study.

Results: The median baseline vitamin D concentration was 48.0 nmol/l. In multivariable linear regression analyses, a 10 nmol/l higher baseline level of vitamin D was associated with a decrease in triglycerides and very low density lipoprotein cholesterol by 0.52 (p = 0.03) and 0.66% (p = 0.005), respectively. In multivariable logistic regression analyses, the odds ratios per 10 nmol/l higher baseline vitamin D level were 0.95 (p < 0.05) and 0.94 (p = 0.01) for the development of the metabolic syndrome and hypercholesterolemia, respectively. There was no association between vitamin D and blood pressure.

Conclusions: An optimal vitamin D status may influence cardiovascular health by changing the lipid profile in a favorable direction and decreasing the incidence of the metabolic syndrome.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Blood Pressure
  • Chromatography, Liquid
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Hypercholesterolemia / epidemiology*
  • Hypercholesterolemia / etiology
  • Hypertension / epidemiology*
  • Hypertension / etiology
  • Incidence
  • Lipids / blood*
  • Male
  • Metabolic Syndrome / epidemiology*
  • Metabolic Syndrome / etiology
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Vitamin D / blood*
  • Vitamin D Deficiency / blood*
  • Vitamin D Deficiency / complications
  • Vitamin D Deficiency / epidemiology


  • Lipids
  • Vitamin D