Published: Thu, July 12, 2018
Medical | By Vicki Mclaughlin

Yet another study finds multivitamins do not protect against heart disease

Yet another study finds multivitamins do not protect against heart disease

Researchers analysed information from 18 previously published studies that looked at the link between multivitamins and mineral supplements and the risk of certain cardiovascular problems.

Americans spent an estimated $36.1 billion on vitamins and nutritional supplements in 2017, and many believe that MVM supplements maintain and promote health by preventing various diseases, including cardiovascular disease.

It's estimated that over half of all older adults in the United States use at least one vitamin or mineral dietary supplement. That is especially true of supplement users living in Europe and Japan.

According to researchers, the best way to prevent cardiovascular disease is to adopt a healthy diet and consume many different types of fruits and vegetables, which are natural sources of vitamins and minerals.

Controversy about the effectiveness of multivitamin and mineral supplements to prevent cardiovascular diseases has been going on for years, despite numerous well-conducted research studies suggesting they don't help.

"Eat a healthy diet for a healthy heart and a long, healthy life", said Eduardo Sanchez, M.D., the American Heart Association's chief medical officer for prevention and chief of the Association's Centers for Health Metrics and Evaluation.

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The group was responding to a systematic review and meta-analysis published online this morning in the journal Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes, which is affiliated with the American Heart Association, titled "Association of Multivitamin and Mineral Supplementation and Risk of Cardiovascular Disease".

“People tend to prefer a quick and easy solution such as taking a pill [rather] than the more effortful method to prevent cardiovascular disease, ” he said.

And despite strong evidence that eating five to 10 servings of fruits and vegetables a day reduces the risk of cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer's and a range of other diseases, just 13 percent of Americans meet this goal, the CDC found.

Currently, there are no legal hurdles for the manufacturers of mineral and vitamins supplements to cross before they are sold to the general public, and at least 30 percent of the US population take multivitamins and mineral supplements, the authors noted. And because dietary supplements arent regulated the same as drugs, they dont have to be proven safe or effective before making their way to store shelves.

Kims report comes on the heels of a June study that also found multivitamins had no protective effect against heart disease and stroke.

When the research team of investigators from Johns Hopkins and other universities combined all the data, they found no statistical associations between multivitamin supplements and CVD mortality, CHD mortality, stroke mortality, or stroke incidence.

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