Supplements Linked to Less Kidney Function

LONDON, Ontario, April 28 (UPI) — Those with diabetic nephropathy, kidney disease caused by diabetes, who took high doses B vitamins had more kidney function decline, Canadian researchers say.

Dr. Andrew A. House of the University of Western Ontario and Dr. J. David Spence of the Robarts Research Institute in London, Ontario, and colleagues conducted a randomized, placebo-controlled trial at five university medical centers in Canada involving B-vitamin therapy and diabetic nephropathy patients.


The patients received single tablets of B vitamins containing 2.5 milligram dosage of folic acid, 25 mg/d of vitamin B6 and 1 mg/d of vitamin B12 or matching placebo.

Study participants assigned to the B-vitamin group had poorer kidney function compared with the placebo group and a significantly greater number of heart attacks, stroke, revascularization compared to the placebo group, the study says.

“Given the recent large-scale clinical trials showing no treatment benefit, and our trial demonstrating harm, it would be prudent to discourage the use of high-dose B vitamins as a homocysteine-lowering strategy outside the framework of properly conducted clinical research,” the study authors said in a statement.

The findings are published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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