Call for an instant quote
0345 90 80 161
Open Mon to Fri 09:00 - 17:30 | Sat 09:00 - 16:00 (GMT)
19 June 2014 09:00
A lack of exposure to sunshine can be particularly dangerous for middle-aged people
Middle-aged people who do not get enough sun face a greater risk of early death, research suggests.
Scientists from the United States have found that a group of adults with an average age of 55 who had lower blood levels of vitamin D were twice as likely to die prematurely as those with higher levels.
Past studies have shown that vitamin D deficiency can increase the risk of developing heart disease, bowel and breast cancer, multiple sclerosis and diabetes - and the latest findings add more weight to this argument.
The discovery is based on the association of low vitamin D with risk of premature death from all causes, not just bone diseases.
The research team from the University of California's San Diego School of Medicine looked at a total of 566,583 people from 14 countries. Subjects were an average age of 55 when the blood was drawn, while the typical follow-up length was nine years.
They observed that the blood level amount of vitamin D associated with about half of the death rate was 30 ng/ml.
Vitamin D, which is made by the body under the skin when it is exposed to sunlight, carries out several important functions, including helping to regulate the amount of calcium and phosphate in the body.
A deficiency can occur when there is not enough of the vitamin to properly absorb the required levels of calcium and phosphate. This can lead to a number of problems such as rickets in children and osteomalacia in adults.
Trips to sunnier climes can therefore be extremely beneficial, especially for middle-aged individuals, so people should find the time to go on holiday at least once a year, while vitamin D supplements can also help.
But don't forget travel insurance, as this can offer protection should anything go wrong on your travels.
28 March 2017
Researchers have highlighted a generation gap in treatment quality of leukaemia patients.
25 March 2017
Want to slow down the ageing process? A new drug claims to be able to do just that - and experts have suggested it could be on the market in three years.
24 March 2017
People who drink moderately are less likely to suffer a heart attack, according to a new study.
23 March 2017
Passengers on certain flights into the UK will no longer be able to carry laptops and tablets like iPads in their hand luggage.
22 March 2017
Mountaineers looking to scale the world's highest peak may need to shell out for a GPS device, according to Nepal's tourism chief.
21 March 2017
The effects of being in skyscrapers, at concerts or even walking on wobbly bridges could help scientists understand the experiences of dementia sufferers, researchers are claiming.
18 March 2017
A young actor has released pictures of a lump on her throat that turned out to be thyroid cancer, with hopes the image will raise awareness and alert others who may be suffering from the disease.
17 March 2017
A "promising treatment" for aggressive blood cancer needs more evidence of its effectiveness before NHS doctors will be able to prescribe, a watchdog is warning.
16 March 2017
Millions of Brits are opting for coach holidays over jet-setting and cruises, new research indicates.
15 March 2017
Thousands of flights to and from America's north east have been cancelled in preparation for a "life-threatening" storm poised to hit the country.
14 March 2017
Seniors who experience weight loss should not put it down to the normal ageing process, experts are warning.
11 March 2017
Gatwick Airport is insisting it is still a "credible and deliverable" expansion option, as the airport experienced its busiest ever February.