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Calcium and Vitamin B12 Associated With Improved Cognitive Performance in Diabetics

Metformin is a prescription drug used to treat people with type-2 diabetes that has a common side effect of impaired cognitive performance. A recent study suggests, however, that supplementation with vitamin B12 and calcium may improve cognitive performance in diabetics taking metformin.

Participants in the study included 1,354 adults, 126 of whom had diabetes. The researchers found that the diabetics had lower cognitive performance when compared with the non-diabetics and that the diabetics taking metformin had even worse cognitive performance.

After adjusting for age, sex, education level history of depression, serum vitamin B12 levels and use of metformin, the researchers found that calcium supplementation was associated with better cognitive performance in the diabetics.

Metformin is also known to result in a deficiency of vitamin B12. The researchers suggest that supplementation with both calcium and vitamin B12 may correct the vitamin B12 deficiency that can result from taking metformin, as well as improve cognitive performance.

Researchers from Barwon Health in Australia conducted the study. It was published in the October 2013 issue of Diabetes Care.

Previous studies suggest that calcium may help with weight loss, skin health, and reducing the risk of stroke. Try adding more dairy products or take a high quality supplement if you’re trying to increase your calcium intake.

Vitamin B12 is a water soluble vitamin that is essential to the proper function of the brain, nervous system and formation of red blood cells. Deficiencies in vitamin B12 can lead to fatigue, depression and memory lapses.

Food sources of vitamin B12 include liver, turkey giblets, oysters, clams, king crab and whole milk. If your diet is not rich in these products, you might want to consider taking a high quality multivitamin or vitamin B12 supplement.

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