Researching strategies to prevent/delay chronic diseases and prolong healthy life expectancy

As the European population is aging rapidly, our society will increasingly depend on the productivity of the senior population and health care providers are challenged by the marked increase in age-related chronic diseases. To address this concern, effective, affordable, and well-tolerated strategies that prevent or delay chronic disease at older age and prolong healthy life expectancy are urgently needed.

Among the most promising strategies are vitamin D, marine omega-3 fatty acids and physical exercise. Vitamin D fortification and supplementation is particularly promising due to the EFSA approved health claim on vitamin D for reduced risk of falling in elderly as well as successful national fortification strategies (Finland). Omega 3 has anti-inflammatory properties, and it is expected that health benefits are consolidated by regular exercise. Individual and combined effects of the three interventions however, have yet to be confirmed in a large clinical trial.

DO-HEALTH, supported by DSM and other partners, will close this knowledge gap in a large multi-centre clinical trial. The project started in December 2012 and has already recruited 2,158 seniors age 70+. DO-HEALTH will be ongoing until 2017.

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