Effects of Vitamin C Supplementation on Glycemic Control and Cardiovascular Risk Factors in People With Type 2 Diabetes: A GRADE-Assessed Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials.
Diabetes Care. 2021 Feb ;44(2):618-630. PMID: 33472962
Shaun A Mason
BACKGROUND: Evidence suggests that vitamin C supplementation could be a potential therapy in type 2 diabetes. However, its effectiveness and evidence quality require further evaluation.
PURPOSE: To investigate the efficacy of oral vitamin C supplementation in improving glycemic control, cardiovascular risk factors, and oxidative stress in people with type 2 diabetes.
DATA SOURCES: Databases (PubMed, Embase, Scopus, Cochrane Library) and clinical trial registries were searched for randomized controlled trials up to 8 September 2020.
STUDY SELECTION: Trials in adults with type 2 diabetes were included. Trials were excluded if supplements were not exclusive to vitamin C and if<2 weeks in duration.
DATA EXTRACTION: Primary outcomes were HbA, glucose, cholesterol, triglycerides, and blood pressure (BP). Data were extracted for changes in outcomes between vitamin C and control groups. Evidence certainty was assessed using Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development, and Evaluation methods.
DATA SYNTHESIS: Twenty-eight studies (= 1,574 participants) were included in the review. Outcomes that changed to a statistically and clinically significant extent with vitamin C were systolic BP (mean difference -6.27 [95% CI -9.60, -2.96] mmHg;= 0.0002), with moderate evidence certainty, and HbA(-0.54% [-0.90, -0.17];= 0.004) and diastolic BP (-3.77 [-6.13, -1.42] mmHg;= 0.002) with very low evidence certainty.
LIMITATIONS: Studies were predominantly short term (<6 months) with a small number of participants (<100).
CONCLUSIONS: While evidence from short-term studies suggests that vitamin C supplementation may improve glycemic control and BP in people with type 2 diabetes, vitamin C supplementation cannot currently be recommended as a therapy until larger, long-term, and high-quality trials confirm these findings.