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Member Research & Reports

Member Research & Reports

Michigan Study Links BPA Exposure with Low Vitamin D

Michigan University School of Public Health professor Dr. John Meeker, along with public health PhD candidate Ms. Lauren Johns, have conducted a study that examines the correlation between exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) such as BPA, and Vitamin D status in individuals.

Dr. John Meeker
[Photo: Dr. John Meeker]

Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) was used in this study’s analysis. NHANES data is collected from a wide pool of nationally-representative individuals. Included in survey records are both blood samples (used to determine vitamin D status) and urine samples (used to estimate exposure to BPA and other EDCs).

The results of the study showed that a higher level of exposure to EDCs was correlated with lower levels of Vitamin D. This was especially true in women, who also showed a correlation between high BPA exposure and low Vitamin D levels (a relationship not significant in men).

Because the use of BPA and other EDCs is so widespread in many products used in every-day life, human exposure is ubiquitous. Therefore, an implication that Vitamin D status, an important issue in public health both historically and currently, could be affected by EDCs is deserving of attention and possibly intervention.

Dr. Meeker offers that “it is possible that EDCs alter the active form of vitamin D in the body through some of the same mechanisms that they use to impact similar reproductive and thyroid hormones.” He also calls for further research to determine the reasons for the association discovered in the study, as well as to investigate whether this association is present in other populations.

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