Adelaide: People with vitamin D deficiency may have a higher risk of developing dementia, according to a new study.
Australian researchers have used genetic data from around 300,000 people from the UK’s Biobank to try to figure out how dementia could be linked to vitamin D deficiency.
The researchers found that low levels of vitamin D were linked to an increased risk of dementia and stroke, and a genetic analysis showed a link between the two. The risk of dementia was higher in people with vitamin deficiency.
Analysis of the data showed that increasing low levels of vitamin D could reduce the risk of developing dementia by up to 17%.
“Our research is the first to examine the effects of vitamin D deficiency on the risks of dementia and stroke using large-scale population genetic analysis,” said Elena Hyponen, a professor and research researcher at the University of South Australia.
Vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium and phosphorus. Both of these elements play an important role in keeping bones strong. People who are deficient in vitamin D are also at risk of osteoporosis, in which their bones become weak and fragile.