Vitamin D Prevents Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer's Disease PatientPeople who have adequate vitamin D levels in their bodies, tend to avoid Alzheimer’s disease when they get old. Besides sufficient vitamin D levels, regular exercise activities are also needed.

This was the result of a research presented at theinternational conference on Alzheimer’s disease in Hawaii. Alzhemair’s often occurs in people above the age of 60 years.

In a study conducted in Framingham, U.S. researchers analyzed heart health and cognitive abilities of 1,200 people aged 70 years. Research was conducted since 1948. Measurement of physical exercise has been carried out in 1986-1987.

After more than two decades, 242 respondents suffered from dementia, including 193 cases of Alzheimer’s.

Those who exercise with moderate to severe intensity,  had reduced risk of dementia by 40 percent. Meanwhile, those who do little exercise have greater risk of the disease, particularly in men.

“This is the first study to follow a large group of individuals for this long a period of time. It suggests that lowering the risk for dementia may be one additional benefit of maintaining at least moderate physical activity, even into the eighth decade of life,” study author Dr. Zaldy Tan, of Brigham and Women’s Hospital, VA Boston and Harvard Medical School, said in an Alzheimer’s Association news release.

In the second study, researchers in the United Kingdom analyzed 3,325 people aged over 65 years and who participated in the third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey in America. The study refers to the measurement of vitamin D amount with cognitive ability.

The researchers took blood samples of respondents and compared with cognitive function including memory tests, orientation space and time, and the ability of recollection. For those who have a score below 10 percent were classified as suffering from cognitive disorders.

Those who experience vitamin D deficiency, have 42 percent higher risk of dementia and those exposed to acute vitamin D deficiency, have 394 percent higher risks.

“It appears that the odds of cognitive impairment increase as vitamin D levels go down, which is consistent with the findings of previous European studies. Given that both vitamin D deficiency and dementia are common throughout the world, this a major public health concern,” study author David Llewellyn, of the University of Exeter Peninsula Medical School, said in the news release.

Naturally, the skin will produce vitamin D when exposed to sunlight. However, the majority of American adults lack of vitamin D because the skin is less productive in producing vitamin D caused by aging and limited sun throughout the year.

If vitamin D requirements are not met from food and beverages, it is advised to take vitamin D supplements which are available on the market. “Vitamin D supplements have proven to be a safe, inexpensive and effective way to treat deficiency,” Llewellyn said

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