Higher vitamin D dietary intake is associated with
a lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, according to the
research conducted by a
team led by Cedric Annweiler, MD, PhD, at the Angers University Hospital
Similarly, investigators led by Yelena Slinin, MD,
MS, at the VA Medical Center in Minneapolis
found that low vitamin D
levels among older women are associated with higher odds of global
cognitive impairment (impairments in all cognitive areas) and a higher
risk of global cognitive decline.
Slinin’s group based its analysis on 6,257
community-dwelling older women who had vitamin D levels measured during
the Study of Osteopathic Fractures and whose cognitive function was
tested by the Mini-Mental State Examination and/or Trail Making Test
Very low levels of vitamin D (less than 10
nanograms per milliliter of blood serum) among older women were
associated with higher odds of global cognitive impairment at baseline,
and low vitamin D levels (less than 20 nanograms per milliliter) among
cognitively-impaired women were associated with a higher risk of
incident global cognitive decline, as measured by performance on the
Mini-Mental State Examination.
Annweieler’s team’s findings were based on data
from 498 community-dwelling women who participated in the Toulouse
cohort of the Epidemiology of Osteoporosis study.
Among this population, women who developed
Alzheimer’s disease had lower baseline vitamin D intakes (an average of
50.3 micrograms per week) than those who developed other dementias (an
average of 63.6 micrograms per week) or no dementia at all (an average
of 59.0 micrograms per week).
Earlier Study Finds Low Vitamin D Linked to
Disability for Men and Women
These reports follow an
article published in the
Journals of Gerontology Series A earlier this year that found that both
men and women who don’t get enough vitamin D - either from diet,
supplements, or sun exposure - may be at increased risk of developing
mobility limitations and disability.