Women with higher levels of Vitamin D were less likely to show early effects from age-related macular degeneration (AMD), according to a recent study.
A University of Buffalo study involving 1,313 women between the ages of 50 and 79 found that those who consumed the most Vitamin D were 59 percent less likely to develop early AMD than those who consumed the lowest levels of the vitamin.
"In women younger than 75, those who had 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentrations lower than 38 nanomoles per liter were more likely to have age-related macular degeneration than women with concentrations greater than 38 nanomoles per liter," Physorg quoted Amy E. Millen, PhD, assistant professor in the University of Buffalo School of Public Health and Health Professions, and lead author of the study, as saying. "Blood concentrations above 38 nanomoles per liter were associated with at least a 44 percent decreased odds of having AMD."
It is believed that the anti-inflammatory properties of the vitamin might stop the destruction in parts of the retina that lead to AMD, for which there is no cure.
The CBC reported that the researchers called AMD "the leading cause of adult irreversible vision loss in developed countries."
The women taking the highest levels of Vitamin D were consuming 720 International Units (18 micrograms) per day while those at the lowest levels took less than 120 IU (3 micrograms).
Studies have warned people to be cautious with the vitamin, because it is thought high doses can weaken bones.
"I would tell women to discuss with their physicians whether or not they should be taking supplements based on their current vitamin D status," The Telegraph quoted Millen as saying.
According to the CNIB, factors that increase the risk of developing AMD include genetics, smoking, high-blood pressure, overexposure to sunlight, eating a lot of meat, and consuming high amounts of monounsaturated, polyunsaturated and vegetable fats.