Vitamin D Effects on Musculoskeletal Health, Immunity, Autoimmunity, Cardiovascular Disease, Cancer, Fertility, Pregnancy, Dementia and Mortality-A Review of Recent Evidence

Autoimmun Rev. 2013 Aug;12(10):976-89. doi: 10.1016/j.autrev.2013.02.004. Epub 2013 Mar 28.

Abstract

Background: Optimal vitamin D intake and its status are important not only for bone and calcium-phosphate metabolism, but also for overall health and well-being. Vitamin D deficiency and insufficiency as a global health problem are likely to be a risk for wide spectrum of acute and chronic illnesses.

Methods: A review of randomized controlled trials, meta-analyses, and other evidence of vitamin D action on various health outcomes.

Results: Adequate vitamin D status seems to be protective against musculoskeletal disorders (muscle weakness, falls, fractures), infectious diseases, autoimmune diseases, cardiovascular disease, type 1 and type 2 diabetes mellitus, several types of cancer, neurocognitive dysfunction and mental illness, and other diseases, as well as infertility and adverse pregnancy and birth outcomes. Vitamin D deficiency/insufficiency is associated with all-cause mortality.

Conclusions: Adequate vitamin D supplementation and sensible sunlight exposure to reach optimal vitamin D status are among the front line factors of prophylaxis for the spectrum of disorders. Supplementation guidance and population strategies for the eradication of vitamin D deficiency must be included in the priorities of physicians, medical professionals and healthcare policy-makers.

Keywords: 25(OH)D level; Autoimmunity; Cancer; Cardiovascular; Dementia; Falls; Fertility; Fractures; Immunity; Infancy; Infections; Mortality; Pregnancy; Vitamin D.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Calcium / therapeutic use
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Female
  • Global Health
  • Humans
  • Pregnancy
  • Vitamin D / adverse effects
  • Vitamin D / physiology
  • Vitamin D / therapeutic use*
  • Vitamin D Deficiency / complications*
  • Vitamin D Deficiency / drug therapy*
  • Vitamin D Deficiency / mortality
  • Vitamin D Deficiency / physiopathology
  • Vitamins / adverse effects
  • Vitamins / physiology
  • Vitamins / therapeutic use*

Substances

  • Vitamins
  • Vitamin D
  • Calcium