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HHS HealthBeat (August 20, 2014)

Vitamin D and dementia

From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.

A study indicates that the risk of being diagnosed with dementia from any cause, including Alzheimer’s, is lower in people whose vitamin D levels are higher – but that going above normal healthy levels doesn’t add benefit.

At the University of Exeter in England, researcher Iain Lang saw this in data on more than 1,600 Americans over 65 years old who were followed for about six years. He compared people who had lower levels of vitamin D to those with normal healthy levels.

“There was approximately a 50 percent higher risk of going to get dementia for the people who were moderately deficient.  Those who were severely deficient had an approximately 125 percent higher risk.”

The study in the journal Neurology was supported by the National Institutes of Health.

Learn more at healthfinder.gov.

HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.

Last revised: August 20, 2014