I saw an article on Muhammad Ali last week, and it made me think of his Parkinson Disease (PD). I remember watching the 1996 Olympics and how slow and stiff he seemed. PD affects more than 1.5 million Americans, with 60,000 new cases each year.
It may be caused by oxidative stress and a high homocysteine levels. A part of the problem with PD and Alzheimer disease is a Vitamin D deficiency. On the plus side however, nutrition, increases in both unsaturated fat and vitamin E intake and vitamin B-66, are becoming viable ways to help protect against PD.
Recently a new study found that vitamin D, which has many health benefits for heart, blood sugar, prostate, bone, breast cell, aging, dental, and back health, may also help with mental health.
Past research showed that vitamin D deficiency negatively affects nerve function. Building on these findings, researchers selected 100 patients with diagnosed PD, 100 patients with Alzheimer Disease (AD), and 100 healthy patients with an average age of 65 years from the Clinical Research in Neurology (CRIN) Database from the Emory University School of Medicine. They examined the patients’ blood samples to look at vitamin D blood levels.
The researchers found that 55% of the PD patients had vitamin D insufficiency compared to 41% of AD patients and 36% of controls. With regards to vitamin D deficiency, 23% of the PD patients were deficient compared to 16% of AD patients and 10% of the controls.
Previous research examining vitamin D and PD, found that PD patients have a higher prevalence of vitamin D insufficiency compared with patients with AD and healthy controls. The researchers recommended more studies to determine whether vitamin D supplementation would improve PD symptoms.
I took vitamin D today and know that there are a variety of these supplements available from World Class Nutrition.