: A Swedish study shows that women with a history of strokes have a dramatically higher risk of dementia if they take calcium supplements.

Never Take This Supplement If You’re a Stroke Survivor

In All Health Watch, Anti-Aging, Arthritis, Diet and Nutrition, Featured Article, Heart and Cardiovascular, Stroke

For years, women have been told to take calcium supplements to prevent osteoporosis.

But now an alarming study has found that women with a history of stroke are seven times more likely to develop dementia if they take calcium.1

Even women who have not had full-blown strokes but have suffered only mini-strokes are at risk. The researchers found that women with a marker for cerebrovascular disease, a sign of mini-strokes, are up to three times more likely to suffer dementia if they take calcium. Mini-strokes, or transient ischemic attacks, are small strokes in which the symptoms last only a few minutes. 

Researchers at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden conducted the study. They looked at the medical histories of 700 women between the ages of 70 and 92.

The scientists also scanned the brains of 447 of the women to look for cerebrovascular lesions. These affect blood flow and are a marker for mini-strokes.

The researchers then followed the women for five years.

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Women with a history of full-blown strokes who took calcium had nearly a 700% increased risk of dementia. Women with a marker for mini-strokes had a 300% greater risk.2

Among women with no stroke history, taking calcium did not seem to increase the chances for dementia.

Dr. Silke Kern of the University of Gothenburg was a co-author on the study. It was published in the journal Neurology. She warned that calcium supplements can alter blood flow to the brain. In people who have compromised blood vessels because of stroke damage, this can lead to dementia.

“Our study is the first to show a relationship between calcium supplementation and increased risk for dementia in older women,” Dr. Kern said.3

Calcium Myth Exposed

Over 50 million older Americans have some form of osteoporosis. About 80% are women.4 Doctors often recommend women take daily calcium supplements of 1,000 mg or more to fight the disease. However, as we recently pointed out, studies show calcium has little or no effect on bone density in women over 50. Nor does it prevent fractures.

To prevent osteoporosis, you’re better off doing weight-bearing exercise. This includes running, jumping, lunges, climbing stairs, tennis, and other high-impact workouts. Also make sure you get plenty of vitamin D3. Get 15 minutes of direct sunlight every day. If you don’t, take a daily supplement with 5,000 IUs of D3.

There’s one more thing you should know about bone loss and other symptoms of aging. You can stop the clock and feel younger than you have in years.

Go here to find out how.

In Good Health,

Angela Salerno
Executive Director, INH Health Watch

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