The highest Vitamin C intake, especially from supplements, reduces the risk of hip and other fractures

November 18, 2009

Researchers at Tufts University , Harvard Medical School and Boston University School of Health evaluated data from 929 subjects who participated in the Framingham Osteoporosis Study. Dietary questionnaires describing their intake for vitamin C, vitamin D, calcium and other nutrients were completed from 1988 to 1989 and were analyzed. The participants were then followed for 15 to 17 years, during which 100 hip fractures and 180 non-vertebral (non-spinal) fractures occurred with 80% of the hip fractures and 86% of the non-spinal fractures occurring in women.

It was found that for both men and women, if their Vitamin C intake from food and supplements was among the highest one-third of participants at a median of 313 mg per day, they had a 44% lower risk of experiencing a fracture than those whose intake was lowest at a median of 94 mg. Those with the highest Vitamin C in take had a one third lower risk of non-vertebral osteoporotic fracture.

When Vitamin C from supplements alone was analyzed, those whose intake was highest at a median of 260 milligrams per day had a 69 % lower risk of hip fracture than non-supplement users and also a reduction, but to a lesser degree in non-vertebral fractures. In their discussion of the findings, the authors explain that vitamin C may protect the bone via its antioxidant action. The study results are published in the November, 2009 issue of the journal Osteoporosis International.