On a day-to-day basis, few things scare those over 60 more than falling. Yes, cancer, heart attacks, and Alzheimer's are bigger concerns. But falling can happen to anyone at any time. And falls can cause broken bones, permanent crippling, blood clots (which can lead to stroke), disfigurement, and even death. So preventing falls is vital to remain healthy throughout your life. Now a new study says one of my favorite nutrients can help.
A study in the Archives of Internal Medicine, a journal of the American Medical Association, has found that vitamin D can significantly reduce your risk of falling. The benefits of taking just 700 IU daily can reduce your odds of falling by a whopping 46% compared to the placebo.
Interestingly, the researchers designed the study to measure the effects of the nutrients on bone density. The discovery of how it can help you avoid falling was a side finding. The study reports that women can boost these results by taking the vitamin D with calcium (500 mg as citrate or malate). The researchers said that women who are not physically active can lower their falling risk by as much as 65% by taking the combination. Men did not seem to benefit.
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Action to take: I've repeatedly extolled the benefits of supplemental vitamin D. Please see my website for all of the benefits! Falls in the elderly are a major cause of morbidity (injury), such as hip fractures. Not only will vitamin D harden your bones, but apparently it will also decrease your risk of dangerous trauma.
I think taking a vitamin D supplement is a must for everyone over 40. However, you need more than the 700 IU used in the study to really make a difference. Take a 5,000 IU vitamin D3 tablet daily. Don't be afraid of bogus claims of vitamin D toxicity at these modest doses. It just doesn't happen. You can order a 5,000 unit tablet by following this