Research links low levels of vitamin D to increased dementia risk

7 August 2014 - New research has suggested people with vitamin D deficencies in the blood may be twice as likely to develop dementia. However, researchers have warned that it is too early to recommend the vitamin as a preventative treatment for the disease.

According to the British study published in the Neurology journal, those with low levels of vitamin D in the blood were 53% more likely to develop a form of dementia, while those with severe vitamin D deficiencies had a 125% larger risk.

The study involved 1,658 people over the age of 65 who did not have dementia at the beginning of the study. The participants were followed for an average of six years, after which 171 participants developed dementia and 102 had Alzheimer's disease.

Experts have warned that the study does not yet prove a link between vitamin D deficency and an increased dementia risk. Lead researcher Dr Llewellyn said: "We need to be cautious at this early stage. Our latest results do not demonstrate that low vitamin D levels cause dementia."

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