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The Vitamin D Study

The results from a Landmark Study on the benefits of supplements included an interesting finding related to blood levels of vitamin D. Long-term dietary supplement users had a blood levels well above the blood levels found in most Americans and well within the optimal range recommended by many vitamin D researchers.  But the general public – the average American – had less than adequate Vitamin D in their blood. 50%–78% of Americans had vitamin D blood levels less than a level thought to be adequate to support optimal health.

The higher vitamin D blood levels seen in the participants of the Landmark Study might be of great benefit because according to recent research, in addition to reducing the risk for osteoporosis, higher blood vitamin D levels have been linked to lower risk for cardiovascular disease, diabetes, certain cancers, all-cause mortality, infections, and more.

The Shaklee Corporation commissioned a follow-up to the Landmark Study. The new study was intended to compare vitamin D blood levels in long-term users, short-term users, and nonusers of vitamin D dietary supplements to compare and identify optimal vitamin D intakes, blood levels, and their impact on cardiovascular disease risk markers. In this cross-sectional study, blood samples were collected from 257 study participants in August 2008, and the results were certainly impressive.

Image 1 shows that increased vitamin D intakes from supplements are associated with increased vitamin D levels in the blood.

Image 2 shows that increased blood levels of vitamin D are associated with increased HDL cholesterol levels.

Higher HDL cholesterol levels have been associated with a lower risk for cardiovascular disease. Other results showed that increased supplemental intake of vitamin D also was also associated with decreased risk of metabolic syndrome and decreased waist circumference. (This sounds like fancy science speak for you might get skinnier!)

The results of these tests were presented earlier this year (May 2009).  If you would like to see the actual research results you can go here Shaklee/National Lipid Association Vitamin D Presentation (Its a little confusing, but if you are a doctor or research scientist you will probably understand it just fine)

You can also read more about the results in the August edition of the Journal of Clinical Lipidology(I was told that the research was accepted without any comments or revisions from the journal reviewers.  This is apparently a big deal and its is a nearly unprecedented event in scientific research publication.)

The study findings were so compelling that the Shaklee Corporation is already moving forward with the another study, a clinical intervention trial intended to confirm that specific vitamin supplementation can increase vitamin D status and HDL cholesterol levels.  By doing this it could be possible to decrease risk for metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease.

So even if you are not into all the science and research or maybe you just find it a little confusing, but it is very impressive that a nutrion company, a company that is selling vitamins, goes to this much trouble to create the best available products.

So when people ask me what brand of vitamins I take I don’t hesitate to answer Shaklee.  In fact, part of the Shaklee corporate stategy for the past 30 years has been sound scientific research.  This research has resulted in the publication of over 100 scientific papers, 90 of them in peer-reviewed scientific journals.  This is unprecedented in the world of Vitamin and Nutrition companies.

Its something to think about!