Vitamin D, calcium disappoint in dementia study
Past research has suggested that vitamin D might protect against memory loss and overall functional decline in the aging brain, but more than 2,000 women in the study who took 400 international units of vitamin D and 1,000mg of calcium daily for an average of eight years developed cognitive impairments at the same rates as a comparison group on placebo pills.
But the study’s authors, whose report appeared in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, said that during the many years of the study researchers gained a better understanding of how calcium and vitamin D might have conflicting effects, so the combination of the two might explain the disappointing results.
“I think the definitive study will just look at the effects of vitamin D,” said lead author Rebecca Rossom, from HealthPartners Institute for Education and Research, a nonprofit arm of a health maintenance organization based inMinnesota.
But she added that the current study is still important because it “gets closer to how women take vitamin D now” to build bone density.