Natural Standard Bottom Line Monograph, Copyright © 2013 (www.naturalstandard.com). Commercial distribution prohibited. This monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. You should consult with a qualified healthcare provider before making decisions about therapies and/or health conditions.
While some complementary and alternative techniques have been studied scientifically, high-quality data regarding safety, effectiveness, and mechanism of action are limited or controversial for most therapies. Whenever possible, it is recommended that practitioners be licensed by a recognized professional organization that adheres to clearly published standards. In addition, before starting a new technique or engaging a practitioner, it is recommended that patients speak with their primary healthcare provider(s). Potential benefits, risks (including financial costs), and alternatives should be carefully considered. The below monograph is designed to provide historical background and an overview of clinically-oriented research, and neither advocates for or against the use of a particular therapy.
Bis(4,7-dimethyl-1,10-phenanthroline) sulfatooxovanadium(IV), decavanadate (V10 O28 6-), metvan, oxovanadates, oxovanadium(IV) complex, titanium aluminum vanadium alloy, vanadyl sulfate.
Vanadium is a chemical element with the symbol V and an atomic number of 23. It is a soft, silvery gray, ductile transition metal. Metallic vanadium does not exist in nature but is found in about 65 minerals. Vanadium has a very limited role in biology and is more important in ocean environments than on land. It is used in the production of nonferrous alloys and most resistant carbon steel, as well as in chemical, glass, paint, varnish, ceramic, and photographic industries. Fats, oils, fruits, and vegetables have been shown to contain the least amounts of vanadium, while whole grains, seafood, meats, and dairy products contain greater amounts. Dill seeds and black pepper contain the most.
Vanadium has been used as a dietary supplement; for treating low blood sugar, high cholesterol, heart disease, tuberculosis, syphilis, anemia, and edema; and for preventing cancer. More high-quality human research is needed to make a conclusion about the safety and effectiveness of vanadium for any condition.
These uses have been tested in humans or animals. Safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider.
Vanadium may act like insulin in the body and may improve how patients with diabetes use glucose. Well-designed studies are needed before a conclusion can be made.
There is limited human research investigating the effects of vanadium on alcohol-induced hangover. More studies are needed in this area.
There is limited human research investigating the effects of vanadium on hemodialysis. High-quality studies are needed in this area.
Early studies suggest that vanadium may improve symptoms associated with cancer of the liver. Additional studies are needed before a conclusion can be made.
High blood pressure
Early studies suggest that vanadium may improve high blood pressure. Additional studies are needed in this area.
*Key to grades:A: Strong scientific evidence for this use; B: Good scientific evidence for this use; C: Unclear scientific evidence for this use; D: Fair scientific evidence against this use (it may not work); F: Strong scientific evidence against this use (it likely does not work).
The below uses are based on tradition or scientific theories. They often have not been thoroughly tested in humans, and safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious and should be evaluated by a qualified health care professional.
Anemia, anticoagulant, antioxidant, antiviral, atherosclerosis, cancer, dental procedures (dental implants), edema, heart disease, high cholesterol, HIV, liver protection, low blood sugar, metabolic syndrome, obesity, syphilis, total parenteral nutrition, tuberculosis, vitamin and nutrient deficiency (vanadium deficiency).
The below doses are based on scientific research, publications, traditional use, or expert opinion. Many herbs and supplements have not been thoroughly tested, and safety and effectiveness may not be proven. Brands may be made differently, with variable ingredients, even within the same brand. The below doses may not apply to all products. You should read product labels, and discuss doses with a qualified healthcare provider before starting therapy.
Adults (18 years and older)
An average diet may provide 6-20 micrograms of vanadium daily. There is no proven safe or effective dose for vanadium in adults.
Children (under 18 years old)
There is no proven safe or effective dose for vanadium in children.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration does not strictly regulate herbs and supplements. There is no guarantee of strength, purity or safety of products, and effects may vary. You should always read product labels. If you have a medical condition, or are taking other drugs, herbs, or supplements, you should speak with a qualified healthcare provider before starting a new therapy. Consult a healthcare provider immediately if you experience side effects.
Avoid with known allergy/hypersensitivity to vanadium.
Side Effects and Warnings
Vanadium may cause gastrointestinal toxicity, brain lesions, and kidney damage or disease; may lower blood sugar and blood pressure; and may have blood-thinning effects. Cramping, stomach upset, nausea, gas, diarrhea, and green discoloration of the tongue may occur. Environmental exposure to vanadium may cause heart or lung disease, fever, eye irritation, irritation of the respiratory tract, lethargy, and fatigue.
Use cautiously in patients with bleeding disorders, blood disorders, blood pressure disorders, heart disease, blood sugar disorders, gastrointestinal disorders, or cancer, and in patients taking agents for any of these conditions.
Use cautiously in patients with immune, liver, neurological, bone, or kidney disorders, as toxicity to these body systems or organs has been reported with exposure to vanadium compounds, especially at high intakes.
Use cautiously in patients trying to conceive, as reproductive and developmental toxicity have been reported following exposure to vanadium compounds.
Avoid occupational exposure to vanadium in patients with respiratory or heart disorders, as toxic effects of vanadium may result from local irritation of the upper respiratory tract, characterized by rhinitis, wheezing, nasal hemorrhage, conjunctivitis, cough, sore throat, and chest pain.
Avoid in patients with known allergy/hypersensitivity to vanadium.
Pregnancy and Breastfeeding
Vanadium is not recommended in pregnant or breastfeeding women, due to a lack of available scientific evidence.
Most herbs and supplements have not been thoroughly tested for interactions with other herbs, supplements, drugs, or foods. The interactions listed below are based on reports in scientific publications, laboratory experiments, or traditional use. You should always read product labels. If you have a medical condition, or are taking other drugs, herbs, or supplements, you should speak with a qualified healthcare provider before starting a new therapy.
Interactions with Drugs
Vanadium may increase the risk of bleeding when taken with drugs that increase the risk of bleeding. Some examples include aspirin, anticoagulants (blood thinners) such as warfarin (Coumadin®) or heparin, antiplatelet drugs such as clopidogrel (Plavix®), and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen (Motrin®, Advil®) or naproxen (Naprosyn®, Aleve®).
Vanadium may reduce blood sugar levels. Caution is advised when using medications that may also lower blood sugar. Patients taking insulin or drugs for diabetes by mouth should be monitored closely by a qualified healthcare professional, including a pharmacist. Medication adjustments may be necessary.
Vanadium may cause low blood pressure. Caution is advised in patients taking drugs that lower blood pressure.
Vanadium may interfere with the way the body processes certain drugs using the liver's cytochrome P450 enzyme system. As a result, the levels of these drugs may be increased or decreased in the blood and may cause increased effects or potentially serious adverse reactions. Patients using any medications should check the package insert and speak with a qualified healthcare professional, including a pharmacist, about possible interactions.
Vanadium may interact with anticancer drugs, antivirals, bone agents, cholesterol-lowering drugs, drugs that affect the heart, drugs that affect the immune system, drugs that are toxic to the kidney, or neurological agents.
Interactions with Herbs and Dietary Supplements
Vanadium may increase the risk of bleeding when taken with herbs or supplements that increase the risk of bleeding.
Vanadium may reduce blood sugar levels. Caution is advised when using herbs or supplements that may also lower blood sugar. Patients taking insulin or drugs for diabetes by mouth should be monitored closely by a qualified healthcare professional, including a pharmacist. Medication adjustments may be necessary.
Vanadium may cause low blood pressure. Caution is advised in patients taking herbs and supplements that lower blood pressure.
Vanadium may interfere with the way the body processes certain herbs or supplements using the liver's cytochrome P450 enzyme system. As a result, the levels of other herbs or supplements may become too high or low in the blood. It may also alter the effects that other herbs or supplements may have on the P450 system.
Vanadium may interact with anticancer herbs and supplements, antivirals, cholesterol-lowering herbs and supplements, herbs and supplements that affect the bones, herbs and supplements that affect the heart, herbs and supplements that affect the immune system, herbs and supplements that are toxic to the kidney, neurological herbs and supplements, or selenium.
This information is based on a systematic review of scientific literature edited and peer-reviewed by contributors to the Natural Standard Research Collaboration (www.naturalstandard.com).
Natural Standard developed the above evidence-based information based on a thorough systematic review of the available scientific articles. For comprehensive information about alternative and complementary therapies on the professional level, go to www.naturalstandard.com. Selected references are listed below.
Aureliano, M. and Crans, D. C. Decavanadate (V10 O28 6-) and oxovanadates: oxometalates with many biological activities. J Inorg.Biochem 2009;103(4):536-546. View Abstract
Bevan, A. P., Drake, P. G., Yale, J. F., et al. Peroxovanadium compounds: biological actions and mechanism of insulin-mimesis. Mol.Cell Biochem 12-6-1995;153(1-2):49-58. View Abstract
Bishayee, A., Waghray, A., Patel, M. A., et al. Vanadium in the detection, prevention and treatment of cancer: the in vivo evidence. Cancer Lett 8-1-2010;294(1):1-12. View Abstract
Boden G, Chen X, Ruiz J, et al. Effects of vanadyl sulfate on carbohydrate and lipid metabolism in patients with non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus. Metabolism 1996 45 (9): 1130-5. View Abstract
Goldfine AB, Patti ME, Zuberi L, et al. Metabolic effects of vanadyl sulfate in humans with non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus: in vivo and in vitro studies. Metabolism. 2000 49 (3): 400-10. View Abstract
Goldwaser, I., Gefel, D., Gershonov, E., et al. Insulin-like effects of vanadium: basic and clinical implications. J Inorg.Biochem 5-30-2000;80(1-2):21-25. View Abstract
Halberstam M, Cohen, N, Shlimovich P, et al. Oral vanadyl sulfate improves insulin sensitivity in NIDDM but not in obese nondiabetic subjects. .Diabetes 1996 45(5): 659-66. View Abstract
Henquin, J. C. and Brichard, S. M. [Role of vanadium in the treatment of diabetes mellitus. Experimental data and clinical applications]. Presse Med 6-27-1992;21(24):1100-1101. View Abstract
Kleinsasser, N., Dirschedl, P., Staudenmaier, R., et al. Genotoxic effects of vanadium pentoxide on human peripheral lymphocytes and mucosal cells of the upper aerodigestive tract. Int J Environ.Health Res 2003;13(4):373-379. View Abstract
Neve, J. Clinical implications of trace elements in endocrinology. Biol Trace Elem.Res 1992;32:173-185. View Abstract
Romero, R. A. Aluminum, vanadium, and lead intoxication of uremic patients undergoing hemodialysis in Venezuela. Transplant.Proc 1994;26(1):330-332. View Abstract
Shioda, N., Morioka, M., and Fukunaga, K. [Vanadium compounds enhance adult neurogenesis after brain ischemia]. Yakugaku Zasshi 2008;128(3):413-417. View Abstract
Thompson, K. H. and Orvig, C. Vanadium compounds in the treatment of diabetes. Met.Ions.Biol Syst. 2004;41:221-252. View Abstract
Whanger, P. D. Selenium and the brain: a review. Nutr Neurosci. 2001;4(2):81-97. View Abstract
Yeh GY, Eisenberg DM, Kaptchuk TJ, et al. Systematic review of herbs and dietary supplements for glycemic control in diabetes . Diabetes Care. 2003 Apr;26(4):1277-94. View Abstract
Copyright © 2013 Natural Standard (www.naturalstandard.com)
The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.
March 22, 2017