B-vitamins in Relation to Depression in Older Adults Over 60 Years of Age: The Trinity Ulster Department of Agriculture (TUDA) Cohort Study

Katie Moore, Catherine Hughes, L. Hoey, M Ward, Conal Cunningham, Anne M. Molloy, Sean Strain, Kevin McCarroll, Miriam Casey, Fergal Tracey, Eamon Laird, Maurice O'Kane, H McNulty

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Objectives: Mental health disorders are major contributors to disease burden in older people. Deficient status of folate and the metabolically related B vitamins may be implicated in these conditions. This study aimed to investigate folate, vitamin B 12 , vitamin B 6 , and riboflavin in relation to depression and anxiety in aging and also considered the role of fortified foods as a means of optimizing B-vitamin status and potentially reducing the risk of these mental health disorders. Design: The Trinity Ulster Department of Agriculture (TUDA) aging study was a cross-sectional cohort study. Setting and Participants: Community-dwelling adults (n = 5186; ≥60 years) recruited from 2 jurisdictions within the island of Ireland from 2008 to 2012. Measures: Depression and anxiety were assessed using the Centre for Epidemiological Studies Depression (CES-D) and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression (HAD) scales, respectively. The following B-vitamin biomarkers were measured: red blood cell folate, serum total vitamin B 12 , plasma pyridoxal-5-phosphate (PLP; vitamin B 6 ), and erythrocyte glutathione reductase activation coefficient (EGRac; riboflavin). Results: Biomarker values in the lowest 20% of status for folate (odds ratio [OR] 1.79; 95% CI 1.23-2.61), vitamin B 6 (OR 1.45, 95% CI 1.01-2.06), or riboflavin (OR 1.56, 95% CI 1.10-2.00), but not vitamin B 12 , were each associated with an increased risk of depression (CES-D score ≥16). Correspondingly, B vitamin–fortified foods if consumed daily were associated with a reduced risk of depression (OR 0.54, 95% CI 0.41-0.70). A deficient status of vitamin B 6 (OR 1.73, 95% CI 1.07-2.81), but not other vitamins, was associated with increased anxiety. Conclusions/Implications: Better B-vitamin status may have a role in impacting positively on mental health in older adults. Regular intake of fortified foods can provide a means of optimizing B-vitamin status and thus could contribute to reducing depression. If confirmed by a randomized trial, these results may have implications for nutrition and mental health policy, and thus quality of life, in older people.

LanguageEnglish
Pages551-557
JournalJournal of the American Medical Directors Association
Volume20
Issue number5
Early online date25 Jan 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2019

Fingerprint

Vitamin B Complex
Agriculture
Cohort Studies
Depression
Vitamin B 6
Fortified Food
Folic Acid
Odds Ratio
Riboflavin
Mental Health
Vitamin B 12
Anxiety
Mental Disorders
Epidemiologic Studies
Erythrocytes
Biomarkers
Independent Living
Pyridoxal Phosphate
Glutathione Reductase
Health Policy

Keywords

  • B-vitamins
  • folate
  • depression
  • anxiety
  • aging
  • food fortification
  • B vitamins

Cite this

Moore, Katie ; Hughes, Catherine ; Hoey, L. ; Ward, M ; Cunningham, Conal ; Molloy, Anne M. ; Strain, Sean ; McCarroll, Kevin ; Casey, Miriam ; Tracey, Fergal ; Laird, Eamon ; O'Kane, Maurice ; McNulty, H. / B-vitamins in Relation to Depression in Older Adults Over 60 Years of Age : The Trinity Ulster Department of Agriculture (TUDA) Cohort Study. 2019 ; Vol. 20, No. 5. pp. 551-557.
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B-vitamins in Relation to Depression in Older Adults Over 60 Years of Age : The Trinity Ulster Department of Agriculture (TUDA) Cohort Study. / Moore, Katie; Hughes, Catherine; Hoey, L.; Ward, M; Cunningham, Conal; Molloy, Anne M.; Strain, Sean; McCarroll, Kevin; Casey, Miriam; Tracey, Fergal; Laird, Eamon; O'Kane, Maurice; McNulty, H.

Vol. 20, No. 5, 01.05.2019, p. 551-557.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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T2 - The Trinity Ulster Department of Agriculture (TUDA) Cohort Study

AU - Moore, Katie

AU - Hughes, Catherine

AU - Hoey, L.

AU - Ward, M

AU - Cunningham, Conal

AU - Molloy, Anne M.

AU - Strain, Sean

AU - McCarroll, Kevin

AU - Casey, Miriam

AU - Tracey, Fergal

AU - Laird, Eamon

AU - O'Kane, Maurice

AU - McNulty, H

N1 - Uploaded PDF of author manuscript and closed the word version

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N2 - Objectives: Mental health disorders are major contributors to disease burden in older people. Deficient status of folate and the metabolically related B vitamins may be implicated in these conditions. This study aimed to investigate folate, vitamin B 12 , vitamin B 6 , and riboflavin in relation to depression and anxiety in aging and also considered the role of fortified foods as a means of optimizing B-vitamin status and potentially reducing the risk of these mental health disorders. Design: The Trinity Ulster Department of Agriculture (TUDA) aging study was a cross-sectional cohort study. Setting and Participants: Community-dwelling adults (n = 5186; ≥60 years) recruited from 2 jurisdictions within the island of Ireland from 2008 to 2012. Measures: Depression and anxiety were assessed using the Centre for Epidemiological Studies Depression (CES-D) and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression (HAD) scales, respectively. The following B-vitamin biomarkers were measured: red blood cell folate, serum total vitamin B 12 , plasma pyridoxal-5-phosphate (PLP; vitamin B 6 ), and erythrocyte glutathione reductase activation coefficient (EGRac; riboflavin). Results: Biomarker values in the lowest 20% of status for folate (odds ratio [OR] 1.79; 95% CI 1.23-2.61), vitamin B 6 (OR 1.45, 95% CI 1.01-2.06), or riboflavin (OR 1.56, 95% CI 1.10-2.00), but not vitamin B 12 , were each associated with an increased risk of depression (CES-D score ≥16). Correspondingly, B vitamin–fortified foods if consumed daily were associated with a reduced risk of depression (OR 0.54, 95% CI 0.41-0.70). A deficient status of vitamin B 6 (OR 1.73, 95% CI 1.07-2.81), but not other vitamins, was associated with increased anxiety. Conclusions/Implications: Better B-vitamin status may have a role in impacting positively on mental health in older adults. Regular intake of fortified foods can provide a means of optimizing B-vitamin status and thus could contribute to reducing depression. If confirmed by a randomized trial, these results may have implications for nutrition and mental health policy, and thus quality of life, in older people.

AB - Objectives: Mental health disorders are major contributors to disease burden in older people. Deficient status of folate and the metabolically related B vitamins may be implicated in these conditions. This study aimed to investigate folate, vitamin B 12 , vitamin B 6 , and riboflavin in relation to depression and anxiety in aging and also considered the role of fortified foods as a means of optimizing B-vitamin status and potentially reducing the risk of these mental health disorders. Design: The Trinity Ulster Department of Agriculture (TUDA) aging study was a cross-sectional cohort study. Setting and Participants: Community-dwelling adults (n = 5186; ≥60 years) recruited from 2 jurisdictions within the island of Ireland from 2008 to 2012. Measures: Depression and anxiety were assessed using the Centre for Epidemiological Studies Depression (CES-D) and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression (HAD) scales, respectively. The following B-vitamin biomarkers were measured: red blood cell folate, serum total vitamin B 12 , plasma pyridoxal-5-phosphate (PLP; vitamin B 6 ), and erythrocyte glutathione reductase activation coefficient (EGRac; riboflavin). Results: Biomarker values in the lowest 20% of status for folate (odds ratio [OR] 1.79; 95% CI 1.23-2.61), vitamin B 6 (OR 1.45, 95% CI 1.01-2.06), or riboflavin (OR 1.56, 95% CI 1.10-2.00), but not vitamin B 12 , were each associated with an increased risk of depression (CES-D score ≥16). Correspondingly, B vitamin–fortified foods if consumed daily were associated with a reduced risk of depression (OR 0.54, 95% CI 0.41-0.70). A deficient status of vitamin B 6 (OR 1.73, 95% CI 1.07-2.81), but not other vitamins, was associated with increased anxiety. Conclusions/Implications: Better B-vitamin status may have a role in impacting positively on mental health in older adults. Regular intake of fortified foods can provide a means of optimizing B-vitamin status and thus could contribute to reducing depression. If confirmed by a randomized trial, these results may have implications for nutrition and mental health policy, and thus quality of life, in older people.

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