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Low Vitamin D levels linked to rapid and severe mental decline in the elderly

Oct 05, 2015

Low Vitamin D levels linked to rapid and severe mental decline in the elderly

You can have enough vitamin D in your blood, be low in vitamin D (insufficiency) or really lack it (deficiency). In this study from University California Davis and Rutgers University having low levels of vitamin D accelerated cognitive decline dramatically – at three times a faster rate compared to those with adequate vitamin D.

The researchers analyzed data from 382 diverse men and women with an average age of 76 At the Alzheimer’s Disease Center in Sacramento. The participants had normal cognitive function or had either mild cognitive impairment which increases the risk for Alzheimer', or were diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.

Twenty-six percent of participants were vitamin D deficient and 35% were insufficient. Fifty-four percent of Caucasians and 70% of African Americans and Hispanics had low vitamin D. The rate of cognitive decline was two-to-three times faster in the vitamin D deficient people over a five-year period. The study is published in JAMA Neurology.