May 23, 2024

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Association Between Vitamin D Levels and Inflammatory Marker CRP in Older Adults

Association Between Vitamin D Levels and Inflammatory Marker CRP in Older Adults


Association Between Vitamin D Levels and Inflammatory Marker CRP in Older Adults.


Experts from Trinity College Dublin and University of Limerick have established a connection between vitamin D levels and C-reactive protein (CRP), an inflammation marker, within the bodies of older individuals. This study was recently published in the journal “PLOS ONE.”


CRP is a blood marker used to measure inflammation in the body. Elevated CRP levels may indicate infection, while slightly elevated CRP levels (still within the normal range) suggest mild inflammation.

Scientists believe that sustained low-level inflammation, commonly observed in the elderly, can lead to a gradual buildup of damage and become a major risk factor for various age-related chronic conditions like cardiovascular diseases, cognitive decline, and diabetes.




Approaches that contribute to reducing CRP levels in the blood could potentially have positive effects on preventing chronic diseases.


Vitamin D, often referred to as the “sunshine vitamin,” is essential for bone health and has recently been linked to immune function. Preliminary studies from the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA) indicated that 1 in 8 older Irish adults is deficient in vitamin D, with higher risks among older individuals, smokers, low-income households, and obese individuals.


Previous research by Professor Rose Anne Kenny and Dr. Eamon Laird also reported on the relationship between vitamin D and COVID-19.


The new study utilized data from TILDA and surveyed participants aged 50 and above, who underwent assessments during the initial phase of the study and provided measurements for both vitamin D and CRP.


Key findings:


  • The study revealed a significant association between vitamin D deficiency and elevated CRP levels (indicating inflammation).
  • Adequate vitamin D levels were associated with a reduced risk of elevated CRP levels compared to vitamin D deficiency.
  • These findings persisted even after adjusting for other factors such as physical activity, smoking and alcohol consumption, obesity, education level, kidney function, physiological gender, and age.
  • Overall, CRP levels were notably lower in individuals who were younger, male, highly educated, non-obese, non-smokers, and had fewer than three chronic conditions.
  • Factors that increased the risk of elevated CRP levels included obesity, smoking, female gender, lack of exercise, chronic conditions, poor kidney function, and diabetes.


These observations also provide reassurance for policymakers that fortifying foods to enhance vitamin D levels could be health-promoting without adverse effects on inflammation.


Dr. Eamon Laird, the lead author of the study, stated, “This research is of great significance as vitamin D deficiency and chronic disease rates are high in older Irish individuals.

Our study, combined with previous trials in this area, suggests that optimizing vitamin D status above deficiency levels can improve inflammatory pathways in community-dwelling older adults.”


“Given that the Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) recently revised their guidelines for daily vitamin D intake for older adults to 15 µg (600 IU), our findings should offer further assurance to decision-makers that maintaining adequate vitamin D status is indeed associated with lowered inflammation levels without added risks. Vitamin D is just one component; to minimize inflammation risk, individuals should consider vitamin D alongside regular physical activity, a healthy lifestyle, sufficient sleep, and social engagement.”






Association Between Vitamin D Levels and Inflammatory Marker CRP in Older Adults

(source:internet, reference only)

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Important Note: The information provided is for informational purposes only and should not be considered as medical advice.