African-Americans Tend to Come Up Short.

Position:VITAMIN D

Across the board, African-American adults are generally at greater risk for a number of chronic and potentially life-shortening conditions--such as hypertension, stroke, insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and all-cause mortality--some of which is associated with vitamin D deficiency.

An estimated 40% of American adults may be vitamin D deficient. For African-Americans, that number may be 76%, according to a study by The Cooper Institute, Dallas, Texas.

The results, published in the Journal of Investigative Medicine, found that African-American men and women with moderate or high fitness levels are 45% less likely to have vitamin D deficiency than those with low fitness levels. Additionally, obese African-American men and women were 70% more likely to have vitamin D deficiency than those who were normal weight.

The body naturally produces vitamin D in response to the skin's exposure to sunlight. People with darker skin pigmentation, like AfricanAmericans, are at greater risk for vitamin D deficiency or insufficiency...

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