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Published on 28 November 2008

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Vitamin K in diabetes breakthrough


A breakthrough in diabetes treatment for men is being hailed after trials showed that vitamin K slows the development of insulin resistance.

But women appear not to benefit, according to results from the three-year clinical trial at the Jean Mayer Human Nutrition Research Center on Ageing at Tufts University (USDA HNRCA).

Sarah Booth, senior author and director of the Vitamin K Laboratory at the USDA HNRCA, said: “Men who received vitamin K had less progression in their insulin resistance by the end of the trial.

“Conversely, we saw progression in insulin resistance in women who received vitamin K, and in the men or women who were not given it.”

The men and women all took 500 micrograms of vitamin K, five times the Adequate Intake (AI) recommended by the Institute of Medicine’s Food and Nutrition Board. They also received calcium and vitamin D.

In addition to improved insulin resistance, the men had lower blood insulin levels compared to the men who did not receive the vitamin.

Insulin is a hormone that plays a role in transporting sugar into cells so it can be converted into energy.

Copyright Press Association 2008

Human Nutrition Research Center

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