Good news from an updated set of recommendations by the US Preventive Services Task Force:  Vitamin D supplements and physical therapy or regular exercise help prevent falls in older adults.  And those at the most risk reap the greatest benefits of the regimen.

Analysts on the task force studied follow-up periods of 6 to 36 months for participants in 9 trials of Vitamin D supplementation.  On average, there was a 17% reduction in falls, with the largest effect seen in seniors who’d been diagnosed as Vitamin D deficient.

A recent Tufts review of studies published last year saw similar results with Vitamin D supplementation of 700-1000 IU daily reducing fall risks by 20%.

The new task force study also included 18 studies involving 3500 people over 75 who’d had interventions of exercise or physical therapy.  Falling, the leading cause of injury in adults age 65 or older, was reduced by 13% for participants.

From Tufts University Health & Nutrition Update,   June 8, 2012  Study published in Annals of Internal Medicine



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