Vitamin D sufficiency is more important that high calcium intake

According to new Icelandic study vitamin D supplementation should be increased to help promote bone health and ward off diseases like osteoporosis.

"Our data suggest that vitamin D sufficiency is more important that high calcium intake," said Dr. Gunnar Sigurdsson, professor of endocrinology and metabolism at Landspitali-University Hospital in Reykjavik. "You need less calcium for normal homeostatis (balance) if your vitamin D (or sunshine) is good. But still you need some calcium in your &to=' target=_blank>diet."

Calcium is important for reducing osteoporosis-linked bone loss in older people, and vitamin D -- which the body makes naturally through exposure to sunlight -- plays a vital role in helping the body absorb that calcium. Supplements can also be used to raise vitamin D levels. The Icelandic study analyzed levels of parathyroid hormone (PTH), reports Forbes.

Researchers also measured levels of the parathyroid hormone (PTH), which is known to play a role in maintaining proper blood levels of calcium and phosphate and is generally thought to increase when vitamin D or calcium intake is insufficient.

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