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Vitamins Blog

Experts: Don't Waste Your Money on Multivitamins

Posted 16 Dec 2013 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Dec. 16, 2013 – With three new studies finding that a daily multivitamin won't help boost the average American's health, the experts behind the research are urging people to abandon use of the supplements. The studies found that popping a daily multivitamin didn't ward off heart problems or memory loss, and wasn't tied to a longer life span. The studies, published in the Dec. 17 issue of the journal Annals of Internal Medicine, found that multivitamin and mineral supplements did not work any better in these respects than placebo pills. Dietary supplements are a multibillion-dollar industry in the United States, and multivitamins account for nearly half of all vitamin sales, according to the U.S. Office of Dietary Supplements. But a growing body of evidence suggests that multivitamins offer little or nothing in the way of health benefits, and some studies suggest that high doses ... Read more

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Multivitamins May Help Fight HIV Progression, Study Suggests

Posted 26 Nov 2013 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Nov. 26, 2013 – New research from Africa suggests that basic multivitamin and selenium supplements might greatly lower the risk that untreated people with the AIDS virus will get sicker over a two-year period. It's not clear how patients who take the vitamins and mineral might fare over longer periods. And the impact of the study in the United States will be limited because many Americans diagnosed with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, immediately begin treatment with powerful medications known as anti-retroviral drugs. Those in the African study hadn't yet begun taking drugs to keep the virus at bay. Still, "it is incredibly useful to find new strategies to delay the progression of HIV disease," said Dr. Jared Baeten, an associate professor of global health at the University of Washington in Seattle who's familiar with the findings. "Not every HIV-infected person is ... Read more

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FDA Medwatch Alert: Eba Multivitamin Supplement By Saratoga Therapeutics LLC: Recall - Allergy Alert On Undeclared Milk Components

Posted 27 Apr 2013 by Drugs.com

ISSUE: Saratoga Therapeutics, LLC of North Wales, PA recalled 900 bottles of ebA Multivitamin Supplement because they may contain undeclared milk components – milk protein(s) and lactose. The label lists the product as being free of milk components. People with an allergy or severe sensitivity to milk run the risk of a serious or life-threatening allergic reaction and people who have lactose intolerance run the risk of gastrointestinal symptoms if they consume ebA Multivitamin Supplement. Affected lot numbers include #0912164 expiration date 12/12 and #1110354 expiration date 10/14. BACKGROUND: ebA Multivitamin Supplement was distributed nationwide and in Australia, Canada, Costa Rica, England, Finland, Ireland, Malaysia, Switzerland, and Tasmania. and reached consumers by mail order, fax order, internet sales and doctors' office sales. The vitamins are packaged in a white plastic b ... Read more

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Study: Mega Vitamins Won't Help After Heart Attack, Chelation Treatment Might

Posted 11 Mar 2013 by Drugs.com

SUNDAY, March 10 – There's mixed news from a much-anticipated clinical trial for people who've suffered a heart attack: While a study found that daily high doses of vitamins and minerals did nothing to improve patient outcomes, there was a hint that controversial "chelation" therapy might. Still, the lead researcher said he's not ready to recommend chelation therapy, in which doctors give patients high-dose vitamins along with special infusions that seek to leach heavy metals from the body. "These findings should stimulate further research, but are not by themselves sufficient to recommend the routine use of chelation therapy and high-dose vitamins in most patients," said Dr. Gervasio Lamas, chief of the Columbia University Division of Cardiology at Mount Sinai Medical Center, in Miami Beach, Fla. The trial, which was funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health, looked at whether ... Read more

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With Benefits Unproven, Why Do Millions of Americans Take Multivitamins?

Posted 4 Feb 2013 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 4 – Millions of Americans take multivitamins and other supplements, but convincing scientific evidence of any true health benefit is lacking, experts say. Now a new study explores why people continue to consume nutritional supplements. "Most people were using supplements because they believe it will improve their health, but we really don't know whether that's true," said study lead author Regan Bailey, a nutritional epidemiologist in the Office of Dietary Supplements at the U.S. National Institutes of Health. "Moreover, the vast majority of supplements used in the U.S. are based on personal choice, not because they are recommended by health care professionals," she added. Nearly half of U.S. adults use dietary supplements, Bailey noted, and supplements are a $30-billion-a-year business. "People have very strong beliefs about these products and I don't know where they are ... Read more

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Multivitamins Won't Help Men Ward Off Heart Disease: Study

Posted 5 Nov 2012 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Nov. 5 – Millions of American men take them, but a new study finds multivitamins will do nothing to help stave off heart disease, heart attack or stroke. The study tracked the cardiovascular outcomes of almost 15,000 older male physicians for more than a decade and found no benefit from multivitamin use across a wide range of cardiovascular outcomes. "I think that people take for granted the idea that, 'You take a supplement, it must be good for you somehow,'" said study lead author Howard Sesso, of Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, in Boston. "In fact, unless you do trials like this, that's really the only definitive way to provide evidence-based medicine to make the right decisions for patients." Sesso and colleagues presented their findings Sunday at the American Heart Association's annual meeting in Los Angeles. The study is also being published ... Read more

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Multivitamins May Slightly Lower Men's Cancer Risk: Study

Posted 17 Oct 2012 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 17 – What has become a daily ritual for millions of Americans may have an unintended and beneficial effect. A new study finds that men who take multivitamins every day for several years may lower their risk of cancer by a small amount. "Total cancer was reduced modestly by about 8 percent," said Dr. J. Michael Gaziano, lead author of the study that appears online Oct. 17 in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). However, the study found no difference in death rates from cancer between people who took vitamins and those who took placebo pills. There was "a suggestion of a benefit in cancer mortality of about 12 percent, but that was not quite statistically significant," added Gaziano, who is a researcher with Brigham and Women's Hospital and the Veterans Administration Boston Healthcare System. The findings are also being presented Wednesday at the ... Read more

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Multivitamins Won't Boost Standard HIV Care, Study Finds

Posted 16 Oct 2012 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Oct. 16 – Taking high-dose multivitamin supplements did not cut the risk of HIV disease progression or death for Tanzanian patients already receiving standard medications aimed at suppressing the virus, a new study finds. The daily supplements seemed tied to potentially harmful increased levels of a certain liver enzyme, according to a report published in the Oct. 17 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. Over the past 15 years, the cocktail of medications known as highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) has greatly decreased HIV-related illness and death. Previous studies had also shown that high doses of multivitamins might reduce HIV-related illness and death in patients not receiving HAART, but the safety and effectiveness of combining the two regimens hadn't been determined. In this new study, researchers compared the effects of high-dose ... Read more

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Vitamins, Minerals May Help Older Men's Sperm Stay Healthy

Posted 29 Aug 2012 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 28 – A diet that contains high amounts of certain vitamins and minerals is associated with improved sperm DNA quality in older men, researchers say. In a study of 80 healthy men, aged 22 to 80, investigators found that those older than 44 who consumed the most vitamin C, vitamin E, zinc and folate had 20 percent less sperm DNA damage than those who consumed the lowest amounts of these so-called "micronutrients." However, a higher intake of these vitamins and minerals was not associated with improved sperm DNA quality in younger men. The study, published in the Aug. 27 online issue of the journal Fertility and Sterility, was led by scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. "It appears that consuming more micronutrients such as vitamin C, E, folate and zinc helps turn back the clock for older men. We found that men 44 and older who ... Read more

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Taking Multivitamins Won't Prevent Canker Sores, Study Says

Posted 5 Apr 2012 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, April 5 – Although vitamin deficiencies have been linked to canker sores, taking a daily multivitamin won't prevent this common mouth ailment, a new study finds. The study found that people with recurrent aphthous stomatitis (RAS), the medical name for canker sores, received no benefit from taking a daily multivitamin as a preventive measure. Previous research on canker sores had shown a benefit to patients with vitamin deficiencies when they took large doses of vitamins. Participants in the new study did not have significant vitamin deficiencies, and the vitamin dose was much smaller – although still equivalent to the recommended daily dose. Patients taking a placebo treatment had no more episodes of the oral lesions than those taking a vitamin regimen. "Giving patients prone to RAS multivitamins did not reduce the duration or frequency of canker sores, so in clinical ... Read more

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CDC: Americans' Levels of Vitamins, Nutrients Basically OK

Posted 2 Apr 2012 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, April 2 – Most Americans have good levels of vitamins A and D and folate – a B vitamin – but some groups of people need to increase their levels of vitamin D and iron, according to a federal report released Monday. The study by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also found that rates of vitamin and nutrient deficiencies vary by age, gender and race/ethnicity, and can be as high as 31 percent for vitamin D deficiency among blacks. The study results were based on measurements of vitamins and nutrients in blood and urine samples collected between 1999 and 2006 from participants in the CDC's National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. "These findings are a snapshot of our nation's overall nutrition status," Christopher Portier, director of CDC's National Center for Environmental Health, said in an agency news release. "Measurements of blood and urine levels ... Read more

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No Cancer Benefit From Vitamin B, Omega-3 Supplements in Heart Patients

Posted 13 Feb 2012 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 13 – Patients with a history of heart disease will most likely not reduce their risk for developing cancer by taking vitamin B and/or omega-3 fatty acid supplements, a new French analysis suggests. "In the population we studied, we found no beneficial effects of either B vitamins or omega-3 fatty acids taken over five years on cancer occurrence or cancer-related death," noted study author Valentina Andreeva, who is with the nutritional epidemiology research unit at the University of Paris XIII in Bobigny, France. Andreeva and her colleagues report their findings in the Feb. 13 online edition of the Archives of Internal Medicine. To explore the protective potential of B vitamins and fatty acid supplements, the authors did a secondary analysis of data that had been collected in a previous study involving almost 2,000 French men and 500 women. All were between 45 and 80 years ... Read more

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Heart Patients Using Vitamins May Take Meds Improperly

Posted 15 Nov 2011 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Nov. 15 – People with heart conditions who take vitamins may be less likely to take some of their other medications properly, according to a new study. Researchers from the Intermountain Medical Center in Utah asked 100 people with an irregular heartbeat – known as atrial fibrillation – what they knew about warfarin (Coumadin), a commonly prescribed blood thinner. The patients were also asked how well they followed their prescription for the drug, and whether or not they also took vitamins or other supplements. People taking warfarin need regular monitoring because too much of the drug can cause bleeding, and too little can allow blood clots to form, increasing the risk for stroke. In addition, diet also plays a role in warfarin's effectiveness. The study, presented Monday at the American Heart Association's annual meeting in Orlando, Fla., found that 62 percent of patients ... Read more

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Dietary Supplements May Harm Older Women: Study

Posted 10 Oct 2011 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Oct. 10 – Far from being healthy, supplements such as multivitamins, minerals and folic acid may actually raise the odds for death in older women who take them, a new study suggests. Dietary supplements are widely used in the United States, often with the hope of avoiding chronic disease. However, the long-term health consequences of many compounds are unknown, the researchers said. "Our study raises concerns about the safety of a number of commonly used dietary supplements," said lead researcher Jaakko Mursu, a nutritional epidemiologist at the University of Eastern Finland, in Kuopio. "We would advise people to reconsider whether they need to use supplements and put more emphasis on a healthy diet," he said. The report was published in the Oct. 10 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine. For the study, Mursu's team collected data on nearly 39,000 women who took part in the ... Read more

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Smokers Mistakenly Believe Vitamins Protect Them From Cancer

Posted 5 Aug 2011 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Aug. 5 – Smokers who take a multivitamin pill may think they can smoke more because the supplement protects them from the harmful affects of cigarettes, according to a new study. Researchers found that some people who smoke mistakenly believe the vitamins will reduce their risk of cancer, allowing them to light up more often. The study noted that such trading of a virtuous behavior for a subsequent indulgence, known as the "licensing effect," could undermine smokers' urge to kick the addiction. "Smokers who take dietary supplements can fool themselves into thinking they are protected against cancer and other diseases. Reminding health-conscious smokers that multivitamins don't prevent cancer may help them control their smoking or even encourage them to stop," said the study's lead author, Wen-Bin Chiou in a journal news release. The study, published online Aug. 2 in the journal ... Read more

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