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Plasma homocysteine concentration is decreased by dietary intervention*

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 March 2007

Marja-Leena Silaste*
Affiliation:
Department of Internal Medicine and Biocenter Oulu, University of Oulu, Kajaanintie 50, P.O. Box 5000, FIN-90014 Oulu, Finland
Maire Rantala
Affiliation:
Department of Internal Medicine and Biocenter Oulu, University of Oulu, Kajaanintie 50, P.O. Box 5000, FIN-90014 Oulu, Finland
Georg Alfthan
Affiliation:
National Public Health Institute (KTL), Mannerheimintie 166, FIN-00300, Helsinki, Finland
Antti Aro
Affiliation:
National Public Health Institute (KTL), Mannerheimintie 166, FIN-00300, Helsinki, Finland
Y. Antero Kesäniemi
Affiliation:
Department of Internal Medicine and Biocenter Oulu, University of Oulu, Kajaanintie 50, P.O. Box 5000, FIN-90014 Oulu, Finland
*Corresponding
*Corresponding author: Dr Marja-Leena Silaste, fax +358 8 315 5348, email Marja-Leena.Silaste@oulu.fi
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Abstract

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High plasma total homocysteine (tHcy) concentration is reported to be a risk factor for vascular diseases. We investigated the extent to which serum folate and plasma tHcy respond to a high intake of natural folate from food. Thirty-seven healthy females volunteered to participate in a crossover dietary intervention. The study included a baseline period and two 5-week diet periods (low- and high-folate diets) with a 3-week washout in between. The low-folate diet contained one serving of both vegetables and frui/, while during the high-folate diet the subjects ate at least seven servings of vegetables, berries, and citrus frui/. Serum and erythrocyte (RBC) folate, serum vitamin B12, and plasma tHcy concentrations were measured at the baseline and at the end of each diet period. The mean concentrations of serum and RBC folate were 11·0 (sd 3·0) nmo/ and 412 (sd 120) nmo/ at the end of the low-folate diet and 78 (95 % CI 62, 94) % and 14 (95 % CI 8, 20) % higher in response to the high-folate diet (P<0·001). The serum concentration of vitamin B12 remained unchanged during the intervention. The mean plasma tHcy concentration was 8·0 μmo/ at the end of the low-folate diet and decreased by 13 (95 % CI 9, 18) % in response to the high-folate diet (P<0·001). In conclusion, a diet high in fresh berries, citrus fruit, and vegetables effectively increases serum and RBC folate and decreases plasma homocysteine.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © The Nutrition Society 2003

Footnotes

*

Presented in part in the 72nd Scientific Sessions, Atlanta, GA, 7–10 November 1999: Tormala M-L et al. (1999) Circulation100, 1–25.

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