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Nutrients 2010, 2(4), 408-425; doi:10.3390/nu2040408
Review

Nonclassical Vitamin D Actions

*  and
Clinic for Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, Heart and Diabetes Center North Rhine-Westphalia, Ruhr University Bochum, Georgstrasse 11, 32545 Bad Oeynhausen, Germany
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 23 February 2010 / Revised: 17 March 2010 / Accepted: 22 March 2010 / Published: 25 March 2010
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers for Vitamins)
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Abstract

It is becoming increasingly clear that vitamin D has a broad range of actions in the human body. Besides its well-known effects on calcium/phosphate homeostasis, vitamin D influences muscle function, cardiovascular homeostasis, nervous function, and the immune response. Vitamin D deficiency/insufficiency has been associated with muscle weakness and a high incidence of various chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, multiple sclerosis, and type 1 and 2 diabetes. Most importantly, low vitamin D status has been found to be an independent predictor of all-cause mortality. Several recent randomized controlled trials support the assumption that vitamin D can improve muscle strength, glucose homeostasis, and cardiovascular risk markers. In addition, vitamin D may reduce cancer incidence and elevated blood pressure. Since the prevalence of vitamin D deficiency/insufficiency is high throughout the world, there is a need to improve vitamin D status in the general adult population. However, the currently recommended daily vitamin D intake of 5–15 µg is too low to achieve an adequate vitamin D status in individuals with only modest skin synthesis. Thus, there is a need to recommend a vitamin D intake that is effective for achieving adequate circulating 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentrations (>75 nmol/L).
Keywords: vitamin D; cancer; cardiovascular; mortality; ultraviolet B radiation; diet vitamin D; cancer; cardiovascular; mortality; ultraviolet B radiation; diet
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Zittermann, A.; Gummert, J.F. Nonclassical Vitamin D Actions. Nutrients 2010, 2, 408-425.

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