Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Vitamin D fails to benefit blacks

Joyce Howard Price:

Vitamin D supplementation does not appear to have the same bone-strengthening benefits in post-menopausal black women as it does in older white women, according to a study in yesterday's issue of Archives of Internal Medicine.

"To our knowledge, this study is the first clinical trial examining the effect of vitamin D on bone loss in African-American women," bone specialists at Winthrop University Hospital in Mineola, N.Y., wrote.

"Our study demonstrated a lack of benefit of vitamin D supplementation in loss of skeletal mass in calcium-sufficient African-American women in midlife."

Dr. John F. Aloia, chief academic officer at Winthrop and the report's first author, said he and his colleagues had assumed that giving black post-menopausal women substantially more vitamin D than is recommended would decrease bone loss in that population. In fact, he said, many scientists hypothesized it would have this effect.

The authors said previous trials that "suggest a benefit of vitamin D supplementation have been conducted with white participants."

"But our study found that giving post-menopausal African-American women much more vitamin D is not beneficial" in preserving bone-mineral density, Dr. Aloia said.

Researchers said further studies are needed to determine if their findings are applicable to women of other ethnic groups.

The study in Archives examined 280 healthy black women, ages 50 to 75, who, daily over a three-year period, received either a placebo or a large supplemental dose of vitamin D. Neither investigators nor study participants knew who received what.

More evidence for the biological existence of race.

Bone Health: Do Vitamin D Pills Help Blacks?

Vitamin D supplements not effective in preserving bone mineral density in black women

Vitamin D May Not Help Black Women's Bones

Vitamin D Fails to Prevent Bone Loss in Black Women

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