Homocysteine is an amino acid.
- Studies have shown that a high level of homocysteine in the blood is related to an increased risk of coronary heart disease, stroke and peripheral vascular disease.
- Homocysteine is just one risk factor for cardiovascular disease and any type of nutritional approach to reducing this risk should consider a person’s overall risk profile.
- Blood homocysteine levels are strongly influenced by diet, obesity, age as well as by genetic factors.
- The dietary components with the greatest effects in helping to break down homocysteine, are folic acid and vitamins B6 and B12.
- Although evidence for the benefit of lowering homocysteine levels is not conclusive, individuals at high risk should be advised to take supplemental folic acid and vitamins B6 and B12.