New research finds an association between low vitamin D levels and the risk of Alzheimer’s and dementia.
This study followed 1,658 people over the age of 65 who showed no signs of dementia. The results were surprising- it seems that people with low vitamin D levels had a 53% increased risk of developing dementia, and people with extremely deficient levels had a 125% increased risk of developing dementia (in comparison to participants with normal vitamin D levels).
It’s important to note that this research doesn’t imply that low vitamin D levels CAUSE dementia. However, it seems that there is a correlation between the two that warrants further investigation. It’s possible that this research could lead to new dietary recommendations in an attempt to boost vitamin D levels. Could vitamin D supplements prevent or delay the development of Alzheimer’s?
Research in the past has shown that vitamin D could reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s Disease in mice. Alzheimer’s research is actually a great example of the importance of animal models. Because Alzheimer’s is generally a disease that affects people later in life, studies in humans could take years- or decades- to yield useful results. Alzheimer’s mouse models are used in research because researchers can observe changes from one generation to the next in a relatively short period of time.
Read more about the possible correlation between vitamin D and dementia here:
Yes, you read that right- new research suggests that diets including specific types of cocoa could prevent Alzheimer’s! We’re not talking about the candy bars you grab at the grocery store check-out line, though… we’re talking about cocoa extract.
In Alzheimer’s patients, the accumulation of beta amyloid proteins damages nerve cells. But through a recent mouse study, researchers found that a specific cocoa extract prevents this accumulation. Lavado cocoa extract is rich in antioxidants called polyphenols, and the study suggests that using it as a dietary supplement could help prevent Alzheimer’s disease.
Because brain damage begins to occur in Alzheimer’s patients long before the onset of physical symptoms, prevention is extremely important.
This isn’t the first time the chocolate has been recommended for health benefits. Past research suggests that chocolate may lower your cholesterol levels and reduce your risk of stroke and diabetes. Read more about cocoa and Alzheimer’s here: