People living in sunny places have lesser risk of getting a stroke. In what is being claimed as a first, research has shown that that there is a link between a person’s environment and his risk of getting a stroke. The environment under question being how exposed a person is to the sun.
According to researcher from University of Alabama at Birmingham, Leslie McClure, PhD, previous research has shown a strong relationship between stroke and cognitive impairment. On the other hand, there has also been research linking cognitive impairment and sunlight. So, it naturally followed that there should be a research for studying the impact of sunlight on stroke.
The study spanned across several racial and geographical differences and continued for a long-term. It included 16000 men and women in which the participants were asked where they lived in their lives. The researchers then used a program developed by NASA that uses clouds, smog and a few other parameters to calculate the sunlight exposure. This calculation is based on the latitude and longitude of the geographical area.
The people under observation were asked about their health every 6 months over the next five years. In this period, 351 of them had a stroke. The data gathered on these people was analysed and it was clear that people who lived more in sun were at a lesser risk of getting a stroke and vice-versa. People who lived in areas with sun exposure less than of normal were at a 60 percent increased risk of getting a stroke.
McClure was not sure about the reason for this phenomenon, but she offered an explanation that it could have something to do with the sun being the major source of vitamin D in a person. But this was confirmed by another study that linked vitamin D in the body to brain development. It was found that people who took most vitamin D were less likely to have a stroke. These two studies certainly revealed very insightful information to build on in the future, even though the findings may need to be cross-verified with further research.