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Vitamin D has gotten a lot of press in the last year or so, ever since researchers decided that Vitamin D deficiency is widespread and seems to be related to many health concerns, including osteoporosis, depression, heart disease and stroke, cancer, diabetes, and more. Now, a new study has linked Vitamin D to Parkinson's Disease.
People with a recent onset of Parkinson’s disease have a higher than average likelihood of having a vitamin D insufficiency, according to researchers from the Emory University School of Medicine.

"Many people don’t consistently differentiate (between vitamin insufficiency and deficiency)," says Marian L Evatt, co-author of the study. "However, most vitamin D researchers would say that that deficiency is a vitamin D level below 20ng/ml and insufficiency is a vitamin D level below 30 ng/ml." These are the figures the researchers used for the study.

As the disease progressed, vitamin D levels appeared to stabilise; whereas 70 per cent of the study participants had vitamin D insufficiency when first affected by the disease, that figure fell to 51% when it had progressed. Similarly, vitamin D deficiency was seen in 26% of patients at onset, and only 7% later on. This, say the researchers, indicates that it might be involved in the manifestation of Parkinson’s disease.
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From Women to Women:

The growing awareness of how much our bodies rely on vitamin D has raised concern that the dietary recommended daily intake values (DRI’s) are woefully obsolete — 200 IU (International Units) a day for adults 19–50 years old, 400 IU for those 51–70, and 600 IU for those over 70. Experts now agree that the DRI’s for vitamin D are way too low, particularly for people who don’t get sufficient sun exposure.

Some studies have shown that adults need 3000–5000 IU per day, and others indicate healthy adults can readily metabolize up to 10,000 IU vitamin D per day without harmful side effects. The European Union’s Scientific Committee on Food lists 2000 IU per day as the safety cut-off, as does the US Food and Nutrition Board. But the latest science strongly suggests most adults should be taking more. What gives? We agree that unless you have testing and monitoring, there is wisdom in keeping the safe upper intake at 2000 IU per day. On balance, the point here is that vitamin D at doses far higher than today’s daily intake values (DRI’s) appears to be safe, to promote optimal health, to reduce the risk of many serious diseases, and even to speed healing for serious health concerns.

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