Growing evidence that vitamin, folic acid supplements do not improve cognitive performance or prevent Alzheimer’s Disease


Demen­tia study ques­tions advice on tak­ing sup­ple­ments (BBC News):

Tak­ing vit­a­min B12 and folic acid sup­ple­ments does not seem to cut the risk of devel­op­ing demen­tia in healthy peo­ple, say Dutch researchers. In one of the largest stud­ies to date, there was no dif­fer­ence in mem­o­ry test scores between those who had tak­en the sup­ple­ments for two years and those who were giv­en a place­bo

Dr Eric Kar­ran, direc­tor of research at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said: “This large tri­al adds to pre­vi­ous evi­dence sug­gest­ing that while vit­a­min B sup­ple­ments can low­er homo­cys­teine lev­els, this does not trans­late into improved mem­o­ry and think­ing in the gen­er­al old­er population.”

Study: Results of 2‑year vit­a­min B treat­ment on cog­ni­tive per­for­mance (Neu­rol­o­gy). From the abstract:

  • Objec­tive: We inves­ti­gat­ed the effects of 2‑year folic acid and vit­a­min B12 sup­ple­men­ta­tion on cog­ni­tive per­for­mance in elder­ly peo­ple with ele­vat­ed homo­cys­teine (Hcy) levels.
  • Con­clu­sions: Two-year folic acid and vit­a­min B12 sup­ple­men­ta­tion did not ben­e­fi­cial­ly affect per­for­mance on 4 cog­ni­tive domains in elder­ly peo­ple with ele­vat­ed Hcy lev­els. It may slight­ly slow the rate of decline of glob­al cog­ni­tion, but the report­ed small dif­fer­ence may be attrib­ut­able to chance.
  • Clas­si­fi­ca­tion of evi­dence: This study pro­vides Class I evi­dence that 2‑year sup­ple­men­ta­tion with folic acid and vit­a­min B12 in hyper­ho­mo­cys­teine­mic elder­ly peo­ple does not affect cog­ni­tive performance.

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