The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog is intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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    Vitamin C lowers fracture risk

    Researchers at the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research 30th Annual Meeting reported that taking vitamin C supplements might reduce the risk for hip and nonvertebral fracture.

    First, the details.

    • The researchers looked for a correlation between total, dietary, and supplemental vitamin C, and the risk of hip and nonvertebral fracture among 958 individuals participating in the Framingham Osteoporosis Study.
    • Participants began completing food frequency questionnaires between 1988 and 1989.
    • They were followed for hip fracture until 2005 and for nonvertebral fracture until 2003.

    And, the results.

    • 100 participants experienced a hip fracture and 180 had a nonvertebral fracture during the study.
    • After adjusting for potential confounding factors, those with the lowest total and supplemental vitamin C intake experienced significantly more hip and nonvertebral fractures than those with the highest total and supplemental vitamin C intake.
    • Total vitamin C intake ranged from 97 mg/day to 305 mg/day.
    • The association was not seen when dietary vitamin C intake alone was evaluated.

    The bottom line?
    There’s some support for these findings in a 2007 study of rats where supplementary vitamin C improved the mechanical resistance to fracture.

    However a 2006 study of smokers concluded that vitamin C had no effect on fracture risk.

    So, should all people take vitamin C supplements, and should doctors measure vitamin C blood levels?

    9/19/08 20:36 JR

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