Study: Low vitamin D levels are linked to worse Multiple Sclerosis symptoms

Recently conducted research, which looked at five years of data from 469 subjects, has found a possible link between the brain lesions, characterized in multiple sclerosis (MS), and a patient’s vitamin D levels.

Effects of multiple sclerosis
MS is an autoimmune condition that damages the coating – made from a fatty protein called myelin – that insulates the nerve fibers of the brain and spinal cord. The myelin sheath is conducive to sending electrical signals that control physical actions such as movement and speech. As the immune system attacks the coating, inflammation interrupts the electric signals, leaving behind lesions that may be visible with an MRI. According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, there is no cure for MS. However, medications may help decrease the likelihood of attacks that come in the form of blurred vision, numbness and weakness.

Reduction of symptoms
Since 2004 the subjects of the study gave blood samples and have also done an annual MRI to look for new lesions and monitor the disease’s activity. The study results showed that for every additional 10-nanograms-per-milliliter of vitamin D levels in the subjects’ blood, there was a 15 percent less chance of new lesions showing up, as well as a 32 percent lower risk of active disease spots appearing.

Vitamin D’s ability to reduce the symptoms of MS was still apparent even after factors like the subjects’ smoking habit, current MS treatment, age and gender were considered. The correlation between the vitamin D and MS symptoms was so strong, that one of the study’s authors, Ellen M. Mowry, M.D., reported that she and her colleagues could predict the appearance of new lesions and active disease spots based on a subject’s vitamin D levels.

There is still no concrete evidence that vitamin D can help prevent MS symptoms, but Mowry told HealthDay News, “If we are able to prove that through our currently enrolling trial, it will change the way people with multiple sclerosis are treated.”

Other benefits
While vitamin D’s ability to help MS patients is still under investigation, it does have myriad other health benefits. According to the Office of Dietary Supplements, it helps with muscle movement, brain signal transmission, and it also bolsters the immune system by staving off harmful bacteria and viruses. The source also notes, that coupled with calcium, vitamin D can help defend adults against osteoporosis.

You can get your fair share of vitamin D from with a Skinny D supplement from Dr. Newton’s Naturals.

 

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