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Prev Med. 2000 Mar;30(3):225-33.

Vegan diet-based lifestyle program rapidly lowers homocysteine levels.

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Lifestyle Center of America in Sulphur, Oklahoma 73086, USA.



Plasma homocysteine levels have been directly associated with cardiac disease risk. Current research raises concerns as to whether comprehensive lifestyle approaches including a plant-based diet may interact with other known modulators of homocysteine levels.


We report our observations of homocysteine levels in 40 self-selected subjects who participated in a vegan diet-based lifestyle program. Each subject attended a residential lifestyle change program at the Lifestyle Center of America in Sulphur, Oklahoma and had fasting plasma total homocysteine measured on enrollment and then after 1 week of lifestyle intervention. The intervention included a vegan diet, moderate physical exercise, stress management and spirituality enhancement sessions, group support, and exclusion of tobacco, alcohol, and caffeine. B vitamin supplements known to reduce blood homocysteine levels were not provided.


Subjects' mean homocysteine levels fell 13%: from 8.66 micromol/L (SD 2.7 micromol/L) to 7.53 micromol/L (SD 2.12 micromol/L; P < 0.0001). Subgroup analysis showed that homocysteine decreased across a range of demographic and diagnostic categories. Conclusions. Our results suggest that broad-based lifestyle interventions favorably impact homocysteine levels. Furthermore, analysis of Lifestyle Center of America program components suggests that other factors in addition to B vitamin intake may be involved in the observed homocysteine lowering.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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