Home Life Style Vitamin D supplements administration in healthy adults is unjustified, according to meta-analysis

Vitamin D supplements administration in healthy adults is unjustified, according to meta-analysis

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A meta-analysis published in The Lancet shows that vitamin D supplements do not provide any benefit in preventing osteoporosis. Conducted on a sample of  over 4,000 healthy adults, this meta-analysis demonstrates that vitamin D supplements do not improve bone mineral density.

Researchers at the University of Auckland conducted a meta-analysis that included 23 studies on the benefits of vitamin D supplements on bone mineral density. Study leader Professor Ian Reid from the University of Auckland in New Zealand said that most adults do not need supplements of vitamin D. He added that it would be better if these vitamin D supplements were given only to patients at risk.

Researchers analyzed the 23 studies and found that people who took vitamin D supplements had no benefit in terms of preventing osteoporosis. However it was shown that there was a small statistically significant increase in bone density at the femoral neck (0.8%), but according to the researchers, this increase is unlikely to be clinically significant. I seems that widespread administration of vitamin D supplements for the prevention of osteoporosis in adults without risk factors is inappropriate.

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Osteoporosis is characterized by progressive loss of bone density. Osteoporosis is usually discovered accidentally when one makes an X-ray or a special analysis called dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA). Although osteoporosis is a disease that does not hurt, however, it increases the risk of fractures. Usually the most feared complications in osteoporosis are fractures that can greatly decrease quality of life.

There are two types of osteoporosis : primary and secondary. Primary osteoporosis usually occurs in postmenopausal women; this is type 1 primary osteoporosis that  occurs mainly due to estrogen deficiency. But it should be noted that osteoporosis can also occur in men, especially after age of 75 ( type 2 primary osteoporosis or senile osteoporosis ). Secondary osteoporosis occurs as a result of another disease  (renal disease, endocrine dysfunctions ) or after prolonged treatment with corticosteroids.

Osteoporosis can be prevented by lifestyle changes such as diet , physical activity, avoiding falls, vitamin D supplements etc . There are a number of drugs approved by the FDA for the treatment and prevention of this disease such as bisphosphonates, hormone therapy, denosumab etc. Studies have shown that bisphosphonates reduce the risk of fracture but in order that these drugs bring benefits must be administered over a period of several years.

There has been much discussion regarding the administration of vitamin D and calcium supplementation in postmenopausal women. It seems that low-dose supplements have no benefit in terms of lowering the risk of fracture. It is not known what effect higher doses have but it seems that there are some significant side effects such as kidney stones or increased risk of myocardial infarction.