Vitamin D Deficiency and Memory Loss

July 9, 2018
Janelle Thomas MSN, RN
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A surprising statistic shows that only one-third of Americans are getting enough vitamin D – yes, even those living in the Sunshine State of Florida. What else may surprise you is that researchers have found a link between vitamin D deficiency and the development of dementia.

Learn what they’ve found and ways to keep vitamin D levels high.

Vitamin D Deficiency and Dementia

After evaluating vitamin D levels in nearly 1,658 healthy seniors over the age of 65, researchers found that after six years, 171 participants developed dementia (102 developed Alzheimer’s). Those individuals with lower levels of vitamin D had a 53% increased risk of developing dementia, while those with a significantly greater deficiency had a 125% increased risk.

According to Dr. Gayatri Devi, a neurologist specializing in memory disorders, vitamin D helps “prevent the accumulation of toxic amyloid plaque that is present in Alzheimer’s disease,” highlighting its importance and suggesting that sufficient levels of vitamin D may prevent the onset of dementia.

Research is still being conducted to determine for certain whether vitamin D can help prevent dementia and memory loss. In the meantime, vitamin D still remains an important element of a senior’s diet – helping to prevent osteoporosis, diabetes, heart disease, and other ailments.

Related Articles: The Top 5 Brain Foods for Boosting Senior Memory

Ways for Seniors to Increase Vitamin D Levels

As we age, our ability to absorb vitamin D directly from the sun decreases – and for homebound seniors, this deficiency is often greater. Here are a few good sources of vitamin D:

  • Foods: Cod liver oil, salmon, mackerel, tuna, beef liver, cheese, egg yolks, milk, cereal, juice, etc
  • Sunlight: 80-90% of our vitamin D comes from exposure to the sun
  • Supplements: Before taking any over-the-counter medications or vitamins, consult your or your loved one’s physician

Contact Care Options for Kids for Home Health Care Services

At Care Options for Kids, we understand the struggles families face when caring for elderly loved ones. We refer loving and qualified caregivers to provide expert dementia care for families, from respite services to around-the-clock care. Contact us directly to speak with a home health care professional or request a consultation. Together we can determine the best plan of action for your family.

If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring home health care services, contact the caring staff at Care Options for Kids today. (888) 592-5855.