To Vitamin B or Not to Vitamin B
Two studies this year have debunked the belief that vitamin B and folic acid can lower cardiovascular risk. In fact, both reports, which appeared in the March 16 issue of The New England Journal of Medicine, warn that vitamin B and folic acid supplementation may actually put users at greater risk of heart disease.
This research contradicts previous studies, which had theorized that vitamin B taken with folic acid can reduce blood levels of the protein called homocysteine, which has long been linked to heart disease. Study participants were given either a placebo or folic acid supplements combined with vitamins B6 and B12 and then studied for a period of either 3 or 5 years.
Even though the new studies showed that the combined supplements lowered homocysteine levels by as much as 27%, the researchers concluded that this treatment had no significant effect on the risk of cardiovascular disease.
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