Women with low levels of vitamin D are nearly 50 per cent more likely to develop multiple sclerosis than those who get enough, according to a study.
The findings could help to explain why there are higher rates of the disease among those in the North who get less sunlight, which helps the body make vitamin D.
It is believed the 'sunshine vitamin', also found in eggs, red meat and oily fish, may help to suppress immune cells that attack the body to cause MS. The disease can leave people wheelchair-bound by severely damaging their muscles.
Women with low levels of vitamin D are nearly 50 per cent more likely to develop multiple sclerosis than those who get enough, according to a study
US researchers at Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health in Boston examined blood samples from more than 3,200 women, who are two to three times more likely to be diagnosed with MS than men.
Those deficient in vitamin D had a 43 per cent higher chance of getting MS than women with adequate levels. The risk was 27 per cent higher for those deficient in vitamin D as compared with those with just insufficient levels.