provided by Rocky Mountain MS Center
A new study out of Sweden on Vitamin D and multiple sclerosis (MS) adds to the growing body of evidence that suggests that the sunshine vitamin may help prevent MS. Furthermore, data from the study may help us understand what levels of vitamin D are most protective.
During this study, published in the November 20, 2012 issue of Neurology, researchers accessed two population-based biobanks, which were cross referenced with a national birth registry. These biobanks contained 291,500 samples from 164,000 persons collected since 1975 in the northern half of Sweden. From these samples researchers identified and analyzed the vitamin D levels of 192 people who had MS and 37 gestational samples from pregnant mothers whose offspring later developed MS.
This study suggests that people who maintain blood levels above 30 ng/ml of the circulating form of vitamin D are less likely to develop MS compared to people with vitamin D levels below 30 ng/ml. Furthermore, this study suggests that maintaining levels of vitamin D above 30 ng/ml from the third trimester until 26 years of age decreases the risk of developing multiple sclerosis.
Tom Stewart, PAC and co-author of a book about dietary supplements and MS, explains that, when considered in context with other studies, this study raises the possibility that at least some cases of MS may be prevented by maintaining modest blood levels of vitamin D. “For starters, children and siblings of people with MS should have their vitamin D levels checked and vitamin D deficiencies should be treated. Blood levels should probably be increased to 30 ng/ml through supplementation. If testing isn’t practical, adult children or siblings of people with MS might simply supplement with approximately 2000 IU of vitamin D per day. For most people, this dose of vitamin D will raise blood levels to above 30 ng/ml.”
This study suggests that children benefit from optimum levels of vitamin D as well. Dr. Teri Schreiner, Pediatric Neurologist at the Rocky Mountain MS Center at Anschutz Medical Campus, recommends that all of her MS patients have their children’s vitamin D levels tested every year or every other year. “If their children’s vitamin D levels are low, I recommend they supplement. Children who haven’t started puberty yet should be given a dose that corresponds to their level of vitamin deficiency. Children who have already started puberty can safely be given 1,000 IU of Vitamin D,” adds Schreiner.
I am grateful that Rocky Mountain MS Center shared this valuable information with our MS community! You can purchase, Healthy Origins Vitamin D3 right here.