Sufficient Sun exposure helps to maintain the normal levels more effectively than through diet, but northern European countries such as the UK only get sufficient levels of UV light for seven months a year.
“What our results suggest is that hypertensive patients can benefit from vitamin D supplementation if they have vitamin D insufficiency” said the lead author Dr Larsen, as saying by the Daily Telegraph.
Researchers at Holstebro Hospital in Denmark which is on a similar latitude to Glasgow and Moscow,gave vitamind D supplements to a group of 112 high blood pressure patients. Their initial levels of vitamin D measured, and then they were given either Vitamin D or a placebo (dummy pill) for 20 weeks. 92 of the 112 patients were found to have low levels of vitamin D at the start of the study, the Daily Mail reported.
The researchers discovered that those patients taking the vitamin D supplement of 75 mcg (correct) daily showed a considerable reduction in central systolic blood pressure, blood pressure measured near the heart.
When compared to the placebo group, patients taking vitamin D had a lowered in systolic blood pressure of 6.8 mmHg, while diastolic blood pressure was reduced by 1.7mmHg.
Dr Thomas Larsen, who led the study, said: "Probably the majority of Europeans have vitamin D deficiency, and many of these will also have high blood pressure."
"Vitamin D would not be a cure for hypertension in these patients, but it may help, especially in the winter months. However, it's important to stress that this was a small study, and that larger studies are needed to provide solid evidence."
Professor Anna Dominiczak, vice-president of the European Society of Hypertension and University of Glasgow, said: "The effects of vitamin D supplements was as powerful as tablets in trials. These results show a significant reduction in Central Systolic Blood Pressure in patients taking the vitamin D supplement for 20 weeks, when compared to the placebo group.
"This is an initial study, so it needs to be confirmed, but it is potentially interesting as part of an overall strategy for managing hypertension in patients with low levels of vitamin D."