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Larger waistlines linked to higher risk of vitamin D deficiency

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WASHINGTON — Larger waistlines or higher levels of belly fat are associated with higher risk of vitamin D deficiency, according to a report presented in Barcelona at the European Society of Endocrinology annual meeting, ECE 2018.

The study reports that vitamin D levels are lower in individuals with higher levels of belly fat, and suggests that individuals, particularly the overweight with larger waistlines should have their vitamin D levels checked, to avoid any potentially health damaging effects.

Rachida Rafiq and colleagues from the VU University Medical Center and Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands, examined how the amount of total body fat and abdominal fat measured in participants of the Netherlands Epidemiology of Obesity study related to their vitamin D levels.

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After adjusting for a number of possible influencing factors, including chronic disease, alcohol intake and levels of physical activity, the reasearhers found that the amounts of both total and abdominal fat were associated with lower vitamin D levels in women, although abdominal fat had a greater impact.

In men abdominal fat and liver fat, was associated with lower vitamin D levels. But in all cases the greater the amount of belly fat, the lower the levels of detected vitamin D.

Rachida Rafiq said, “Although we did not measure vitamin D deficiency in our study, the strong relationship between increasing amounts of abdominal fat and lower levels of vitamin D suggests that individuals with larger waistlines are at a greater risk of developing deficiency, and should consider having their vitamin D levels checked.”

The researchers now plan to investigate what may underlie this strong association between vitamin D levels and obesity – whether a lack of vitamin D is predisposing individuals to store fat, or whether increased fat levels are decreasing vitamin D levels is not yet clear.

With Agency Inputs

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Diabetes drug might ease heart failure risk

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A new research has showed that the diabetes drug Farxiga might do double-duty for patients, helping to ward off another killer, heart failure.

According to the findings were published in the New England Journal of Medicine to coincide with their presentation at the annual meeting of the American Heart Association in Chicago, Type 2 diabetics who took Farxiga saw their odds of hospitalization for heart failure drop by 27 percent compared to those who took a placebo.

Farxiga is a type of drug called a SGLT2 inhibitor. The compound is called dapagliflozin.

The study included more than 17,000 type 2 diabetes patients aged 40 and older. Nearly 7,000 had heart disease and more than 10,000 had numerous risk factors for heart disease, Wiviott’s group said.

Patients were randomly assigned to take a dummy placebo pill or 10 milligrams of Farxiga each day.

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“When it comes to helping our patients control and manage blood glucose, the ‘how’ appears to be as important [as] the ‘how much,” said study author Dr Stephen Wiviott, a cardiovascular medicine specialist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.

“When choosing a therapy, trial results like these can help us make an informed decision about what treatments are not only safe and effective for lowering blood glucose but can also reduce risk of heart and kidney complications,” Wiviott said in a hospital news release.

Taking the drug did not reduce the risk of heart attack, stroke and cardiovascular-related death, the research team noted. However, patients who took the drug did see healthy declines in their blood sugar levels, plus an added bonus: a 27 percent decrease in their risk of hospitalization for heart failure.

Their risk of kidney failure and death from kidney failure also fell, researchers noted.

Two other recent studies of this class of drugs show that they “robustly and consistently improve heart and kidney outcomes in a broad population of patients with diabetes,” Wiviott noted.

With Inputs from HealthDay

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