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Higher Doses of Vitamin D May Prevent Fractures

Filed Under: Vitamins and Minerals at 5:00 am | By: Mauricio Matusiak
When it comes to potential benefits from taking vitamin D supplements, good news keep on coming. The latest study published in the July 5 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine shows that higher doses of vitamin D may prevent fractures in older women, reducing the risk of hip fractures by 30 percent.

Swiss researchers found that taking more than 800 international units (IU) of vitamin D daily has a significant effect on reducing the fracture risk. However, the evidence review found less than 800 IUs a day didn’t seem to make a difference. The studies included more than 31,000 people and all of the participants in the studies were over 65. About 91 percent of the volunteers in the studies were women.

“Vitamin D supplementation is effective in fracture reduction, including hip fractures,” said study author Dr. Heike Bischoff-Ferrari, from the Center on Aging and Mobility at the University of Zurich and Wald City Hospital, also in Zurich. If everyone took more than 800 IU of vitamin D daily, the impact on public health could be enormous because hip fractures are the most severe and frequent fractures among the elderly, according to Bischoff-Ferrari.

Vitamin D and calcium are essential to maintain healthy bones. The body makes vitamin D when exposed to sunlight. Additionally, fish, eggs, milk, and fortified cereals are good sources of vitamin D. It’s also recommended to obtain between 1,000 and 1,500 milligrams of calcium per day for stronger bones. Rich sources of calcium include milk, dairy products, spinach, turnips, tofu, and sardines.

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