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Vitamin D and Mental Decline

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  • Alan
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/7845703.stm Friday, 23 January 2009 Vitamin D is mental health aid Vitamin D, found in fish and produced by sun exposure,
    Message 1 of 6 , Feb 28, 2009
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      http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/7845703.stm

      Friday, 23 January 2009

      Vitamin D 'is mental health aid'

      Vitamin D, found in fish and produced by sun exposure, can help stave
      off the mental decline that can affect people in old age, a study has
      suggested.

      UK and US researchers looked at 2,000 people aged 65 and over.

      They found that compared to those with the highest vitamin D levels,
      those with the lowest were more than twice as likely to have impaired
      understanding.

      Alzheimer's charities said the research was interesting, but more work
      was needed to understand vitamin D's role.

      Vitamin D is important in maintaining bone health, in the absorption
      of calcium and phosphorus, and in helping the immune system.

      The body makes vitamin D when it is exposed to the sun, or it can be
      obtained from foods such as oily fish, and those fortified with
      vitamin D, such as milk, cereals, and soya drinks.

      But older people's skin is less able to absorb vitamin D from sunlight
      so they are more reliant on obtaining it from other sources.

      Supplements

      Animal and lab studies have previously suggested that the vitamin can
      have a beneficial effect on cognitive function.

      The team from the Peninsula Medical School in Exeter, the University
      of Cambridge and the University of Michigan, assessed people's
      cognition, or comprehension skills.

      People who have impaired cognitive function are more likely to develop
      dementia.

      The researchers looked at people who had taken part in the Health
      Survey for England in 2000.

      Just over 200 had significant cognitive impairment, assessed by
      looking at people's attention, orientation in time and space and memory.

      The study found that as levels of vitamin D went down, levels of
      cognitive impairment went up.

      The paper will appear in a forthcoming issue of the Journal of
      Geriatric Psychology and Neurology.

      Dr Iain Lang from the Peninsula Medical School, who worked on the
      study, said: "For those of us who live in countries where there are
      dark winters without much sunlight, like the UK, getting enough
      vitamin D can be a real problem - particularly for older people, who
      absorb less vitamin D from sunlight.

      "One way to address this might be to provide older adults with vitamin
      D supplements.

      "This has been proposed in the past as a way of improving bone health
      in older people, but our results suggest it might also have other
      benefits.

      "We need to investigate whether vitamin D supplementation is a
      cost-effective and low-risk way of reducing older people's risks of
      developing cognitive impairment and dementia."

      Risk factor?

      Rebecca Wood, chief executive of the Alzheimer's Research Trust, said:
      "Many foods that contain vitamin D, such as oily fish, eggs and
      breakfast cereals, are also good sources of vitamin B12, which, as
      previous studies have shown, can help protect the brain.

      "Diet is known to influence dementia risk. The best way of reducing
      your risk of developing dementia is to maintain a balanced diet with
      regular exercise and frequent social interactions."

      She added: "These findings may be significant, but much more research
      is needed."

      Dr Susanne Sorensen, head of research at the Alzheimer's Society,
      added: "One in three people over 65 will die with dementia so research
      into how we can reduce risk is to be encouraged.

      "There was some previous evidence to suggest that people with dementia
      may have a lower level of vitamin D in their blood but it was not
      clear if this happened after the onset of disease.

      "It would be interesting if a low level of vitamin D was found to be a
      risk factor for cognitive problems as it is cheap and easy to remedy.

      "We look forward to seeing the published results of this new research
      to help us better understand the potential role of vitamin D in
      reducing risk."
    • VQuest95
      This must be why men generally get balder as they age; the balder they are, the better they retain their smarts. Hmmmm..... What does that say about the fact
      Message 2 of 6 , Feb 28, 2009
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        This must be why men generally get balder as they age; the balder they are, the better they retain their smarts.  Hmmmm..... What does that say about the fact that women don't get as bald as younger men?
         
        To the women on the list.  Maybe the don't need to lose their hair to keep their smarts, because they are smarter than men to begin with.
         
        Cheers  
        Dave Alexander
         
         
         
        In a message dated 02/28/09 08:42:58 Eastern Standard Time, aelewis@... writes:
        But older people's skin is less able to absorb vitamin D from sunlight
        so they are more reliant on obtaining it from other sources.

         
      • Sussa Björkholm
        ... The MAIN reason for getting bald is testosterone. Sussa
        Message 3 of 6 , Feb 28, 2009
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          On Sat, Feb 28, 2009 at 5:16 PM, VQuest95 <vquest95@...> wrote:
          > This must be why men generally get balder as they age; the balder they are,
          > the better they retain their smarts.  Hmmmm..... What does that say about
          > the fact that women don't get as bald as younger men?

          The MAIN reason for getting bald is testosterone.

          Sussa
        • Edgar Owen
          Sussa, I presume you mean abundance of testosterone correlates positively with baldness? Last I heard that was just one more of the many urban myths and old
          Message 4 of 6 , Feb 28, 2009
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            Sussa,

            I presume you mean abundance of testosterone correlates positively with baldness? Last I heard that was just one more of the many urban myths and old wives tales that masquerade for scientific fact on this forum.


            A Russian physicist I know told me his theory that wearing a hat correlates with baldness since if the head is kept cool it tends to retain its hair for warmth. It sounds reasonable as a contributing factor though I have no evidence one way or the other.

            Edgar



            On Feb 28, 2009, at 11:31 AM, Sussa Björkholm wrote:

            On Sat, Feb 28, 2009 at 5:16 PM, VQuest95 <vquest95@aol. com> wrote:
            > This must be why men generally get balder as they age; the balder they are,
            > the better they retain their smarts.  Hmmmm..... What does that say about
            > the fact that women don't get as bald as younger men?

            The MAIN reason for getting bald is testosterone.

            Sussa


          • Alan
            Testosterone is converted (5-alpha reduction) to DHT, which in turn has a harmful effect on hair follicles on the head. ...
            Message 5 of 6 , Feb 28, 2009
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              Testosterone is converted (5-alpha reduction) to
              DHT, which in turn has a harmful effect on hair
              follicles on the head.


              --- In evolutionary-psychology@yahoogroups.com, Edgar Owen
              <edgarowen@...> wrote:
              >
              > Sussa,
              >
              > I presume you mean abundance of testosterone correlates positively
              > with baldness? Last I heard that was just one more of the many urban
              > myths and old wives tales that masquerade for scientific fact on this
              > forum.
              >
              > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baldness#Baldness_folklore
              >
              > A Russian physicist I know told me his theory that wearing a hat
              > correlates with baldness since if the head is kept cool it tends to
              > retain its hair for warmth. It sounds reasonable as a contributing
              > factor though I have no evidence one way or the other.
              >
              > Edgar
              >
              >
              >
              > On Feb 28, 2009, at 11:31 AM, Sussa Björkholm wrote:
              >
              <Snip>
            • Edgar Owen
              Alan, Certainly pattern baldness is male androgen related. That is not the issue. The issue is whether men with higher testosterone levels tend towards more
              Message 6 of 6 , Mar 1, 2009
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                Alan,

                Certainly pattern baldness is male androgen related. That is not the issue. The issue is whether men with higher testosterone levels tend towards more pattern baldness. There is little if any evidence for that, some actually for the reverse.

                Edgar



                On Feb 28, 2009, at 10:30 PM, Alan wrote:

                Testosterone is converted (5-alpha reduction) to
                DHT, which in turn has a harmful effect on hair
                follicles on the head.

                --- In evolutionary- psychology@ yahoogroups. com, Edgar Owen
                <edgarowen@. ..> wrote:
                >
                > Sussa,
                > 
                > I presume you mean abundance of testosterone correlates positively 
                > with baldness? Last I heard that was just one more of the many urban 
                > myths and old wives tales that masquerade for scientific fact on this 
                > forum.
                > 
                > http://en.wikipedia .org/wiki/ Baldness# Baldness_ folklore
                > 
                > A Russian physicist I know told me his theory that wearing a hat 
                > correlates with baldness since if the head is kept cool it tends to 
                > retain its hair for warmth. It sounds reasonable as a contributing 
                > factor though I have no evidence one way or the other.
                > 
                > Edgar
                > 
                > 
                > 
                > On Feb 28, 2009, at 11:31 AM, Sussa Björkholm wrote:
                > 
                <Snip>


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