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A Concussion-Free Football Season: How one High School beat the odds - July 2012

High School in Atlanta added vitamin D in 2011 to their sports teams


Martin Luther King Jr. High School in Lithonia, Georgia has reduced its concussions and sports injuries by almost 100%. What was their secret? In 2011, the school started a parent-led nutrition program that included a daily regimen of vitamin D. The program was instituted by Dr. L. Ray Matthews, one of the nation’s leading researchers in vitamin D and assistant professor of surgery and director of surgical care at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta,

“Vitamin D helps prevent sports related concussions by several different mechanisms,” says Dr. Matthews. “First of all, vitamin D produce stronger bones (skull) which is more resilient to stress and shock from trauma to the head, vitamin-D also improves muscle strength and muscle coordination which results in less frequent falls. …it also produces a special protein called “heat shock protein” which makes the brain more resilient to heat, cold, stress, and trauma,” he said.

Vitamin D also controls 10% of the genes in the human body and is involved in tissue repair after repeated blows to the head and is a steroid hormone that controls 3,000 out of 30,000 genes in the human body.

While the NFL and rest of the world is trying to figure out what to do about concussions, at least one football team gets it right! MLK finished their 2011 football season with a 12-1 record in Georgia’s very competitive 5-A class. Even more impressive is they played 13 games with 85 football players without a single concussion. There was only one fracture/broken bone the entire season.

Meanwhile, a 2010 study found 81% of the New York Giants football players are vitamin D deficient. In fact, Dr. Matthews says more NFL teams should reconsider their strategies in dealing with head injuries. They can start by adding Vitamin-D into their team daily regimen, as concussions have increased 60% over the past decade.

Reports over the past decade show, the number of concussion increased 60%., Dr. Matthews believes, taking one pill a day can decrease those numbers.

Football Without vitamin D: 2010

  • 5 concussions

Football With vitamin D: 2011

  • 0 concussions
  • Almost 100% reduction in injuries
  • 12-1 record and was ranked third in the state's 5-A Division.
  • Eleven football players were named to the All-Region First Team.

PDF of similar newpaper item is attached to the bottom of this page


See also VitaminDWiki

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