Posted on Apr 29, 2010, 6 a.m.
Diets featuring foods rich in folate and vitamin B6 may help protect against stroke and heart disease.
Certain B vitamins, such as folate and B6, lower levels of homocysteine, an amino acid that is associated with cardiovascular diseases. Hiroyasu Iso, from Osaka University (Japan), and colleagues conducted a study involving 23,119 men and 35,611 women, ages 40 to 79 years, who were enrolled in the Japan Collaborative Cohort Study, following the subjects for an average of 14 years of follow-up during which the incidence of stroke and heart disease were tracked. Women who reported eating more foods containing the B-vitamins folate and B-6 were less likely to die from stroke and heart disease. Similarly, Japanese men reporting diets high in these same B vitamins were less likely to die of heart failure. Writing that: “Dietary folate and vitamin B6 intakes were inversely associated with mortality from heart failure for men and with mortality from stroke, coronary heart disease, and total cardiovascular disease for women,” the team concludes that: “High dietary intakes of folate and vitamin B6 were associated with reduced risk of mortality from stroke, coronary heart disease, and heart failure among Japanese.”
Renzhe Cui, Hiroyasu Iso, Chigusa Date, Shogo Kikuchi, Akiko Tamakoshi for the Japan Collaborative Cohort Study Group. “Dietary Folate and Vitamin B6 and B12 Intake in Relation to Mortality From Cardiovascular Diseases. Japan Collaborative Cohort Study.” Stroke, Apr 2010; doi:10.1161/STROKEAHA.110.578906.