Vi­ta­min D de­fi­ciency linked to MS

Daily Messenger - - National -

IS­LAM­ABAD: Women with low lev­els of vi­ta­min D have a 43 per­cent higher risk of de­vel­op­ing mul­ti­ple sclero­sis.

More than 2.3mil­lion peo­ple around the world have MS, in­clud­ing around 100,000 peo­ple in Bri­tain and more than 400,000 in the US.

Peo­ple nor­mally get di­ag­nosed be­tween the ages of 20 and 40, but it is dif­fi­cult to iden­tify the crip­pling con­di­tion un­til symp­toms be­come ap­par­ent.

Now, a study by Har­vard T. H. Chan School of Pub­lic Health says mea­sur­ing vi­ta­min D lev­els could de­note one's risk - which shows main­tain­ing a healthy amount of the ' sun­shine vi­ta­min' is key to pre­vent­ing MS.

Study au­thor Doc­tor Kas­san­dra Munger said: ' There have only been a few small stud­ies sug­gest­ing that lev­els of vi­ta­min D in the blood can pre­dict risk.

' Our study, in­volv­ing a large num­ber of women, sug­gests that cor­rect­ing vi­ta­min D de­fi­ciency in young and mid­dle- age women may re­duce their fu­ture risk of MS.'

For the study, re­searchers used a repos­i­tory of blood sam­ples from more than 800,000 women in Fin­land, taken as part of pre­na­tal test­ing.

The re­searchers then iden­ti­fied 1,092 women who were di­ag­nosed with MS an av­er­age of nine years af­ter giv­ing the blood sam­ples. They were com­pared to 2,123 women who did not de­velop the dis­ease.

De­fi­cient lev­els of vi­ta­min D were de­fined as fewer than 30 nanomoles per litre ( nmol/ L). In­suf­fi­cient lev­els were 30 to 49 nmol/ L and ad­e­quate lev­els were 50 nmol/ L or higher.

Of the women who de­vel­oped MS, 58 per­cent had de­fi­cient lev­els of vi­ta­min D, com­pared to 52 per­cent of the women who did not de­velop the dis­ease.

Re­searchers found that with each 50 nmol/ L in­crease in vi­ta­min D lev­els in the blood, the risk of de­vel­op­ing MS later in life de­creased by 39 per­cent.

Women who had de­fi­cient lev­els of vi­ta­min D had a 43 per­cent higher risk of de­vel­op­ing MS than women who had ad­e­quate lev­els as well as a 27 per­cent higher risk than women with in­suf­fi­cient lev­els.

Dr Mun­gar added: ' More re­search is needed on the op­ti­mal dose of vi­ta­min D for re­duc­ing risk of MS.

'But striv­ing to achieve vi­ta­min D suf­fi­ciency over the course of a per­son's life will likely have mul­ti­ple health ben­e­fits.'

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