Your brain needs specific vitamins to sustain its normal functions. They are involved in production of brain chemicals, maintaining the normal activities of the brain cells and preventing degeneration of the brain cells. Deficiency of specific vitamins can cause memory loss. Fortunately, dementia related to deficiency of certain vitamins is reversible. Increasing intake of foods rich in vitamins essential for maintaining normal cognitive behavior and consuming supplements containing these nutrients help in reversing memory loss. If you are experiencing thinking problems, check whether you are suffering from deficiency of the following vitamins.
List Of 5 Common Vitamin Deficiencies That Cause Dementia
Your body needs vitamin B12 to maintain the healthy functioning of the nerve cells. Studies have found an association between vitamin B12 and memory loss. Vitamin B12 is an essential constituent of the myelin sheath of the nerve cells. Deficiency of this B vitamin weakens the myelin sheath, which slows down transmission of signals between the nerve cells, leading to memory loss. Risk of vitamin B12 deficiency is higher in older people. Absorption of vitamin B12 tends to slow down with age. Certain anti-diabetes drugs can also inhibit absorption of vitamin B12. As vitamin B12 occurs naturally in animal foods, a strict vegan diet can increase the risk of vitamin B12 deficiency. Increasing intake of lean meat, fish, poultry and dairy helps in meeting your daily vitamin B12 need. For additional vitamin B12 necessary for reversing dementia, you can take supplements.
Vitamin B9 or folic acid is another essential vitamin for preventing memory loss. It works along with vitamin B12 in reducing the homocysteine level in the body. Homocysteine is a toxic byproduct of protein metabolism. It stimulates abnormal white matter signals that cause cognitive impairment. Furthermore, folic acid is involved in production of certain neurotransmitters that help in transmitting signals between the brain cells. Leafy green vegetables are excellent sources of folic acid. Moreover, you can take folate supplements to treat deficiency of this B vitamin.
Just as folic acid, vitamin B6 is also involved in breaking down homocysteine, which helps in preventing damage to the brain cells. High level of homocysteine is one of the prominent causes of development of protein plaques in the brain, which leads to Alzheimer’s disease. Furthermore, vitamin B6 is involved in synthesis of glutathione, an antioxidant that protects the brain from oxidative stress.
The antioxidant property of vitamin E prevents oxidative-stress induced memory loss in elderly people. Studies suggest that intake of vitamin E supplement can help people suffering from thinking problems. It can also benefit people suffering from moderate Alzheimer’s disease. Consuming seeds, nuts and dark colored fruits can protect you from vitamin E deficiency.
Vitamin D is also necessary for preventing memory loss. In a recent Rutgers University study, researchers have found an association between vitamin D deficiency and dementia. Researchers have found that people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease have fewer vitamin D receptors in the hippocampus, the memory center of the brain. Vitamin D receptors help in preventing degeneration of the brain cells. To prevent memory loss, you can rely on vitamin D fortified foods and supplements.