Validated treatments and therapeutic perspectives regarding nutritherapy

J Nutr Health Aging. 2009 Oct;13(8):737-41. doi: 10.1007/s12603-009-0207-6.


Nutritherapy seeks to prevent or correct disease by the use of nutritional supplements including vitamins, trace elements, or macronutrients. This chapter of the "Les Entretiens du Carla" reviews the potential of nutritherapy for the prevention or improvement of sarcopenia, which is the progressive reduction in muscle mass and muscle strength prevalent in late-life. It is critical that we review nutrients and their potential to maintain muscle mass and strength which ultimately will help minimize falls and fractures among the older population. Evidence from randomized-controlled trials will be reviewed for muscle mass as well as important sarcopenia-related endpoints including lower extremity strength and function, as well as falls and fall-related fractures. This chapter will focus on vitamin D as a compelling strategy with evidence for strength gain, fall and fracture prevention from double-blind randomized controlled trials. The other strategy discussed is increased protein intake although longer-term trials and evidence for clinically important endpoints are limited. Today, there is no consistent data on other micronutrients or macronutrients with an established potential to combat sarcopenia.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Accidental Falls / prevention & control
  • Aged
  • Aging / physiology
  • Dietary Proteins / administration & dosage
  • Dietary Proteins / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Lower Extremity
  • Muscle Strength / physiology
  • Muscle, Skeletal / physiology*
  • Nutrition Therapy*
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Sarcopenia / diet therapy*
  • Sarcopenia / prevention & control
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Vitamin D / therapeutic use*
  • Vitamins / therapeutic use


  • Dietary Proteins
  • Vitamins
  • Vitamin D