Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Multivitamin use and your health

The Study
The health benefits of multivitamin use remain controversial. In this recent investigation, 30,899 adults identified through the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) had their multivitamin use measured and then were followed for over 6 years. Multivitamin use had no association with risk of mortality in either direction. A few other interesting findings:

-Adequate intake of Vitamin A, K, magnesium, zinc and copper were associated with a reduce risk of all cause mortality. However, this was only true when these nutrients were obtained from foods, not from supplements.

-Excess intake of calcium was associated with an increased risk of cancer death. This association was mostly from supplemental calcium, not calcium obtained from food.

Annals of Internal Medicine doi:10.7326/M18-2478

Take Home Message
It appears that multivitamins don’t do much harm or much good. There really is no reason to take them. I always recommend getting your vitamins and minerals from your food. Make sure to include a variety of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and nuts each day. The findings concerning calcium are disturbing. If you are taking a high dose of calcium, you may want to talk to your doctor about the pro’s and con’s of doing so.

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