Many of us think that popping multivitamins and supplements makes us better or helps prevent certain conditions. That’s exactly what the vitamin and supplements industry wants you to believe – and they’re doing a great job! In 2010, the industry had sales of USD 28 billion.
However, latest medical research demonstrates that most of these vitamins and supplements have no real benefits. In one study of more than 1700 patients aged 50 or older, who had recently suffered a heart attack, patients were given either a multivitamin, or a multi-mineral mix, or a placebo. The extra vitamins didn’t protect the heart against secondary cardiovascular events.
Another study that looked at the effect of vitamins on brain power – cognition – over a period of 12 years. It showed that vitamin use did not slow cognitive decline.
Another review of 26 studies looking at the pros and cons of supplements to prevent heart disease, cancer and death. It found that there was insufficient evidence that vitamins were beneficial.
The conclusion? Adults who are eating a well balanced diet don’t need them! There is no clear benefit and they might even be harmful – and they don’t prevent chronic disease. (The one exception that does need vitamin supplementation was women of childbearing potential as folic acid supplementation prevents neural tube defects in their babies.)
So, don’t be fooled by the claims that are made on the benefits of vitamins and supplements. Instead, focus on a eating a healthier, well-balanced diet that includes lots of fresh vegetables, fruits, and nuts.
Download our free e-book on moving to a healthier lifestyle and Wellness – A FAT Guy’s Guide to Fitness
Data sourced from: Multivitamins: Time to Just Say No? Medscape. Apr 08, 2014