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Friday, October 30, 2015
Sun Exposure in Teen Years May Delay Onset of MS
But researchers only found a connection, not cause-and-effect link
By Amy Norton
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 7, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- People with multiple sclerosis tend to develop it later if they had regular sun exposure as teenagers, a new study suggests -- adding to evidence linking the disease to a lack of sunlight and vitamin D.
The study found that sun exposure during adolescence seemed to influence the age at which people developed MS: The more summer sun they soaked up, the later their symptoms appeared.Of nearly 1,200 Danish adults with MS, those who'd spent time in the sun every summer day developed symptoms two years later, on average, versus people who'd gotten less sun.
The findings do not mean that basking in the sun will prevent or treat MS, experts stressed.
But the results do support past research suggesting that vitamin D plays some role in the disease, according to Nicholas LaRocca, vice president of health care delivery and policy research for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, in New York City.
Sunlight triggers the body's synthesis of vitamin D, and some studies have linked both sun exposure and higher levels of vitamin D in the blood to a lower risk of multiple sclerosis.Read more
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