Vitamin D not protective against cardiovascular events

Research into whether vitamin D supplementation has a protective effect against major cardiovascular events has found no significant association.

Vitamin D supplement

Vitamin D supplementation is not associated with a reduced risk of major cardiovascular events, a meta-analysis has suggested[1]

The research included 21 randomised placebo-controlled trials that lasted for at least 1 year (up to a maximum of 12 years) involving 83,291 patients with a mean age of 65.8 years. Only four of the included trials listed cardiovascular disease as a primary end point. 

Compared with placebo, vitamin D supplementation was not associated with an overall reduced risk of major adverse cardiovascular events, nor with the individual outcomes of myocardial infarction, stroke or cardiovascular death. There was also no association with all-cause mortality.

The results did not vary when stratified by dose, gender or baseline serum vitamin D levels.

Previous observational studies have identified a link between low vitamin D status, cardiovascular events and all-cause mortality, the researchers explained. However, they suggested that these findings could be due to confounding factors, such as outdoor activity levels and nutritional status.

“The included trials, although different in their inclusion criteria, showed consistent findings of no significant benefit of vitamin D supplementation in reducing CVD events and all-cause mortality,” the team concluded.


[1] Barbarawi M, Kheiri B, Zayed Y et al. Vitamin D supplementation and cardiovascular disease risks in more than 83000 individuals in 21 randomized clinical trials: a meta-analysis. JAMA Cardiol 2019; In press. doi: 10.1001/jamacardio.2019.1870

Last updated
Clinical Pharmacist, CP, July 2019, Vol 11, No 7;11(7):DOI:10.1211/PJ.2019.20206727

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