B-12: Food for the bones

New research on diet and osteoporosis has revealed that vitamin B-12 deficiency may be an important modifiable risk factor for osteoporosis. After gauging bone quality and B-12 levels in more than 2,500 men and women, researchers found that people with low B-12 levels had on average lower bone mineral densities — putting them at greater risk of osteoporosis — than people with higher levels. They say that “getting enough vitamin B-12 from meats, poultry, fish and dairy products may be important for both men and women in maintaining strong bones.”

Some individuals, particularly older people, have difficulty absorbing B-12 from foods, however. For them, “cereals fortified with vitamin B-12 or use of vitamin B-12 supplements offers additional protection.”

Source: Tufts University, Feb 10, 2005