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Increasing vitamin D levels over time associated with reduced homocysteine concentrations

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Reprinted with the kind permission of Life Extension.

September 5 2016. A study reported on August 22, 2016 in PLOS One uncovered an association between lower homocysteine levels and increasing levels of serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] over follow-up. 

“Both lower serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D and elevated homocysteine concentrations are potential risk factors for cardiovascular disease,” note authors Truong-Minh Pham and colleagues. “A recent analysis of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey reported an inverse association of serum 25(OH)D with homocysteine, however, the longitudinal relationship has yet to be investigated.”

The investigation included 4,475 participants in a Canadian preventive health program who had measurements of serum vitamin D and homocysteine obtained at enrollment and during at least one follow-up visit. The percentage of subjects who supplemented with vitamin D improved from 40% at the beginning of the study to 79% at follow-up, and the amount supplemented increased from a median of 3,000 international units (IU) at baseline to 7,000 IU.

At the beginning of the study, each 10 nanogram per milliliter (ng/mL) increase in vitamin D was associated with a 0.182 micromole per liter reduction in homocysteine. Rising vitamin D levels over time were associated with a reduction in risk of having high homocysteine, defined as over 13 micromoles per liter. Subjects who experienced increases of 30 ng/mL or more of serum vitamin D over the course of the study had an adjusted 68% lower risk of having elevated homocysteine compared to those who did not experience an increase in vitamin D.

“The present study is the first to reveal that prospective improvements in vitamin D status decreased the risk of elevated homocysteine concentrations,” the authors announced. “Population-based strategies aimed at improving vitamin D status and bone health may also contribute to lowering homocysteine concentrations, and potentially to the primary prevention of cardiovascular disease.”

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