Posted on Jun 15, 2010, 6 a.m.
Rush University (US) researchers report beneficial effects of increased intakes of vitamins B6 and B12 in warding off depression in seniors.
In that projections forecast that within 20 years more people will be affected by depression as a leading health condition worldwide, researchers have sought to further elucidate a potential connection between B-vitamin deficiencies and depression. Kimberly A. Skarupski, from Rush University Medical Center (Illinois, USA), and colleagues collected data on 3,500 Chicago-area men and women, ages 65 years and older, surveying their dietary habits and assessing for symptoms of depression, following the subjects for an average of 7.2 years. The researchers observed that those men and women with increased intakes of vitamins B6 and B12 were at decreased likelihood of incident depression. Specifically, for every 10 milligram increase in the intake of vitamin B6, and for every 10 microgram increase in vitamin B12, the risk of developing symptoms of depression were decreased by 2% per year, respectively. The team concludes that: "Our results support the hypotheses that high total intakes of vitamins B-6 and B-12 are protective of depressive symptoms over time in community-residing older adults."
Kimberly A Skarupski, Christine Tangney, Hong Li, Bichun Ouyang, Denis A Evans, Martha Clare Morris. “Longitudinal association of vitamin B-6, folate, and vitamin B-12 with depressive symptoms among older adults over time.” Am. J. Clinical Nutrition, June 2, 2010; doi:10.3945/ajcn.2010.29413.