Vitamin Supplements Come Up Short Once Again

Feb 24 2014, 4:12pm CST | by

Once again the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has concluded that there is no good evidence to support the routine use of multivitamins or most individual or combination vitamins by healthy adults to prevent cardiovascular disease or cancer.

The USPSTF also recommended against the use of two specific vitamins — beta-carotene and vitamin E. Beta-carotene has been linked to a significant increase in the risk for lung cancer among smokers, while “a large and consistent body of evidence has demonstrated that vitamin E supplementation has no effect on cardiovascular disease, cancer, or all-cause mortality.”

For other vitamins or multivitamins, the task force found few significant harms, though they said the evidence was insufficient to allow definitive assessments of the risks and benefits.

The recommendation statement, published in Annals of Internal Medicine, updates the USPSTF’s previous 2003 recommendations and incorporate new evidence about vitamin D, calcium, selenium and folic acid. An initial draft of the recommendation statement was published last December. The USPSTF statement is broadly consistent with similar statements from the National Institutes of Health, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the American Cancer Society, the American Institute for Cancer Research, the American Heart Association, and the American Academy of Family Physicians, all of which found no evidence that vitamins could help prevent cardiovascular disease or cancer.

The USPSTF states that vitamins and minerals are essential to overall health and notes that “a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fat-free and low-fat dairy products, and seafood has been associated with a reduced risk for cardiovascular disease and cancer.” The group also acknowledges that some people with well-defined conditions may benefit from specific nutrients. Folic acid, for instance, when taken by pregnant women can help prevent neural tube defects, and vitamin D  may be beneficial in older people to prevent damage from falling.

Nearly half (40%) of  U.S. adults take at least one dietary supplement, and nearly a third (32%) take a multivitamin supplement. In 2010, people in the U.S. spent more than $28 billion on dietary supplements.

Source: Forbes Business

 
 
 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/30" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Need for Speed Reboot is Coming This Fall
Need for Speed Reboot is Coming This Fall
EA will release a complete new Need for Speed this fall. The video game giant just released a teaser video and the first Need for Speed Gameplay video will be revealed in June.
 
 
Google Self-Driving Cars to Hit Public Roads this Summer
Google Self-Driving Cars to Hit Public Roads this Summer
Google announced today that Google Car prototype vehicles will leave the test track and hit the familiar roads of Mountain View.
 
 
Google Search Analytics Launched in Web Master Tools
Google Search Analytics Launched in Web Master Tools
Google officially announced the new Search Analytics feature in Webmaster tools.
 
 
T-Mobile Hits Verizon with new 'Never Settle Trial' Campaign
T-Mobile Hits Verizon with new 'Never Settle Trial' Campaign
In case customers don't feel satisfied, T-Mobile will pay for them to shift back to Verizon