The less vitamin C in your system, the greater your risk of stroke, according to a French study. The still-preliminary research was presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology and noted on the nydailynews.com.
The study found the risk of of hemorrhagic stroke to be lower among people with normal vitamin C blood levels compared to those with low or deficient levels. Hemorrhagic stroke occurs when a weakened blood vessel ruptures. The most common cause of this type of stroke is uncontrolled hypertension, according to the American Stroke Association. Ischemic stroke occurs as a result of an obstruction within a blood vessel supplying blood to the brain. It accounts for 87 percent of all U.S. stroke cases, according to the ASA.
"Our results show that vitamin C deficiency should be considered a risk factor for this severe type of stroke, as were high blood pressure, drinking alcohol and being overweight in our study," study researcher Dr. Stéphane Vannier, M.D., of Pontchaillou University Hospital in France, said in a statement noted on the nydailynews.com. "More research is needed to explore specifically how vitamin C may help to reduce stroke risk. For example, the vitamin may regulate blood pressure.
The study involved testing vitamin C blood levels in 65 individuals who had suffered an intracerebral hemorrhagic stroke and 65 people who had never had a stroke. Research showed that of all 130 people, 45 percent had normal vitamin C levels and 45 percent had very low levels. The people who had not experienced strokes were those with high levels of the vitamin.
Other recent research related nutrient levels with stroke risk. A 2012 study suggested that people with the highest amounts of lycopene in their blood were 55 percent less likely to have a stroke than people with the lowest amounts of lycopene in their blood.