Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Genetics determine winter vitamin D status

Date:
November 21, 2010
Source:
American Society for Nutrition
Summary:
During the winter, vitamin D status is governed mainly by genetic factors. Conversely, non-genetic factors are most important during the summer. Future studies designed to better understand what these factors are will be especially useful as public health experts continue to explore ways to increase vitamin D status in different populations living under varying environmental and dietary situations.

Vitamin D is somewhat of an unusual "vitamin," because it can be made in the body from sunlight and most foods do not contain vitamin D unless added by fortification. Synthesis of vitamin D in the body requires exposure to ultraviolet light and can be influenced by genetics, skin color, and sun exposure.

Reports of greater than expected vitamin D insufficiency coupled with emerging evidence that higher circulating concentrations of this nutrient may protect against cardiovascular disease have prompted a renewed interest in teasing out how environment, genetics, and behavior work independently and coordinately to influence vitamin D status. To help clarify this, researchers at Emory University studied vitamin D status in twins living in different North American locations.

"The results of the Karohl study are quite important," according to American Society for Nutrition Spokesperson Shelley McGuire, PhD. "Over the past couple decades, nutrition scientists have discovered that maintaining optimal vitamin D status is important for much more than keeping our bones strong. It's also critical for keeping our immune systems healthy and may help protect against diseases like heart disease and cancer. This study suggests that, whereas genetic differences impact winter vitamin D status, lifestyle choices and sun exposure (factors we can control) are predominant in the summer months. Additional research is still needed in more heterogeneous populations."

The authors concluded that during the winter vitamin D status is governed mainly by genetic factors. Conversely, non-genetic factors are most important during the summer. Future studies designed to better understand what these factors are will be especially useful as public health experts continue to explore ways to increase vitamin D status in different populations living under varying environmental and dietary situations.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Society for Nutrition. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. C. Karohl, S. Su, M. Kumari, V. Tangpricha, E. Veledar, V. Vaccarino, P. Raggi. Heritability and seasonal variability of vitamin D concentrations in male twins. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2010; DOI: 10.3945/ajcn.2010.30176

Cite This Page:

American Society for Nutrition. "Genetics determine winter vitamin D status." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 November 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101118123845.htm>.
American Society for Nutrition. (2010, November 21). Genetics determine winter vitamin D status. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101118123845.htm
American Society for Nutrition. "Genetics determine winter vitamin D status." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101118123845.htm (accessed September 22, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, September 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Liberia Pleads for Help to Fight Ebola

Liberia Pleads for Help to Fight Ebola

AP (Sep. 22, 2014) Liberia's finance minister is urging the international community to quickly follow through on pledges of cash to battle Ebola. Bodies are piling up in the capital Monrovia as the nation awaits more help. (Sept. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Doctor Says Border Controls Critical

Ebola Doctor Says Border Controls Critical

AP (Sep. 22, 2014) A Florida doctor who helped fight the expanding Ebola outbreak in West Africa says the disease can be stopped, but only if nations quickly step up their response and make border control a priority. (Sept. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Global Ebola Aid Increasing But Critics Say It's Late

Global Ebola Aid Increasing But Critics Say It's Late

Newsy (Sep. 21, 2014) More than 100 tons of medical supplies were sent to West Africa on Saturday, but aid workers say the global response is still sluggish. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone in Lockdown to Control Ebola

Sierra Leone in Lockdown to Control Ebola

AP (Sep. 21, 2014) Sierra Leone residents remained in lockdown on Saturday as part of a massive effort to confine millions of people to their homes in a bid to stem the biggest Ebola outbreak in history. (Sept. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins