DO-HEALTH participants take 2 study capsules per day and perform a simple home exercise program 3 times a week:
- Two DO-HEALTH study capsules per day, taken with dinner (or preferred meal) with a cold drink.
The supplements (Vitamin D and/or Omega-3 fatty acids and/or Placebo) used in the DO-HEALTH trial will be specifically manufactured for the use in DO-HEALTH.
- DO-HEALTH Home Exercise Program (strength or joint flexibility), performed 3 times a week for 30 minutes.
About the interventions:
- Vitamin D3: The dose used in the trial is 2,000 International Units (IU) per day. The current recommended dose for prevention of bone fractures and falls is 800 IU per day. Our aim is to investigate the possible but today unknown extra-benefits associated with a dose that is higher than the one currently recommended. According to the international guidelines, the highest safe intake of vitamin D is 4,000 IU per day. Participants are allowed to take up to 800 IU of Vitamin D supplements per day on their own initiative, in addition to the study medication according to current guideline recommendations.
- Omega3-Fatty acids: The dose used in the trial is 1 g per day and has been recommended by the American Heart Association. The Swiss Federal Nutrition Commission (Federal Office of Public Health) recommends intake of 500 mg of omega-3 fatty acids per day (2006). Current research suggests that Omega-3 fatty acids may have a protective effect on the cardio-vascular system, although this effect was noted mainly in people who had a heart attack. Therefore Omega-3 fatty acids are recommended for after-care treatment in such cases, but there is no guarantee that this supplement has a protective effect for healthy seniors. Currently there are no guidelines about the optimal daily dose of omega-3 fatty acids. The omega-3 source of the supplements tested in our study is from algae. Therefore individuals with fish allergy can still participate.
- Home Exercise Program: We will offer two different exercise programs: one focusing primarily on muscular strength, the other on joint flexibility. Both programs involve simple gymnastic exercises that should be performed 3 times a week for 30 minutes. At the first clinical visit, a physiotherapist will instruct the program to participants and will explain techniques to perform the exercise program safely and with maximum benefit to participant’s health. The physiotherapist will adapt training intensity to individual needs.