Cleveland, OH—The North American Menopause Society issued apress releaseregarding a new study suggesting that vitamin D may promote greater insulin sensitivity, thus lowering glucose levels and the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

The release notes that other recent studies, too, have shown a relationship between vitamin D and glycemic control, suggesting that vitamin D increases insulin sensitivity and improves pancreatic beta-cell function.

This particular study, according to the  release, involved 680 Brazilian women aged 35 to 74 years. Only 3.5% of them reported using vitamin D supplements. Habitual sun exposure and supplementation were both negatively associated with high glucose levels, demonstrating that vitamin D deficiencies are associated with high blood glucose levels.

The study is titled “Higher serum levels of vitamin D are associated with lower blood glucose levels,” and was published inMenopause.

Dr. JoAnn Pinkerton, NAMS executive director, said, “Although a causal relationship has not been proven, low levels of vitamin D may play a significant role in type 2 diabetes mellitus. Intervention studies are still needed.”