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B-vitamins and bone health

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

B-vitamin supplementation was found to produce no consistent effects on bone turnover or body mass index, however, the vitamin may have different effects in patients with hyperhomocysteinemia, Markus Herrmann et al., University of Sydney, conclude in a study published in the Nov. 18 journal Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine. The one-year, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial analyzed the effect of homocysteine-lowering B-vitamins on biochemical bone turnover markers and bone mineral density in osteoporotic patients. The study included 47 subjects ages 55 to 82 who were treated with either a combination of 2.5 mg folate, 0.5 mg vitamin B12 and 25 mg vitamin B6, or placebo; bone mineral density at lumbar spine and hip was measured at base line and after one year. Vitamin B was the focus of a recent Norwegian study that evaluated the effects of vitamin B on cardiovascular events and concluded it is not justified as secondary prevention in reducing risk of death or major cardio events (1"The Tan Sheet" Sept. 10, 2007, In Brief)...

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Vitamin B and cardio events

Vitamin B is not justified as secondary prevention in reducing risk of death or major cardiovascular events, according to a recent trial presented at the European Society of Cardiology Congress 2007 on Sept. 4. The trial included 3,090 patients with "verified heart disease, mainly stable angina pectoris and 2 or 3 vessel coronary artery disease," according to Marta Ebbing, M.D., Haukeland University Hospital, Bergen, Norway. Subjects were randomly allocated to four groups to receive a daily oral dose of either folate with vitamins B12 and B6, folate with just vitamin B12, vitamin B6 or placebo. During the median follow-up of 38 months, there were "no significant differences in risk of death or major cardiovascular events between the intervention groups." There has been some debate whether vitamin B can lower homocysteine levels and thus prevent cardiovascular events (1"The Tan Sheet" Dec. 18, 2006, p. 12)...

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