Dementia is one of the major causes of disability and dependency among older people worldwide. This condition affects thinking and behaviors as you age.
Is a chronic syndrome that leads to deterioration in cognitive function. Globally, more than 55 million people have dementia with 10 million new cases diagnosed every year.
Recently, a group of researchers from the University of South Australia has found a direct link between dementia and vitamin D deficiency. The study appears in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
Low Vitamin D Levels Associated with Dementia
For the study, the team used data from the UK Biobank to examine the association between 25 (OH)D concentrations with neuroimaging outcomes and the risk of dementia and stroke. The study included data from 294,514 participants.
The researchers found that low levels of vitamin D were associated with lower brain volumes and an increased risk of dementia and stroke, and according to their results in some populations, up to 17% of dementia cases might be prevented by increasing levels of vitamin D from 25 nmol/L to normal levels of 50 nmol/L.
The results of the study have important implications for dementia risk and showed that ensuring that individuals maintain normal vitamin D levels could have a significant impact on the development of dementia and strokes.
We can obtain vitamin D from different sources, the main one is through its synthesis in the low layers of the epidermis of the skin and via ingestion of some foods, especially fatty fish. In most cases that is enough to maintain adequate levels of vitamin D. But according to the findings of recent studies, and the different health benefits of maintaining normal levels of vitamin D, checking for its levels from time to time could be a good practice to make sure that individuals have adequate levels, and if not perform an early intervention with diet or supplementation could have a tremendous health impact.
University of South Australia. “Vitamin D deficiency can lead to dementia.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 June 2022.
Shreeya S Navale, Anwar Mulugeta, Ang Zhou, David J Llewellyn, Elina Hyppönen. Vitamin D and brain health: an observational and Mendelian randomization study. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2022; DOI: 10.1093/ajcn/nqac107