Multivitamins and supplements don't provide health benefits

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The scientists point to increasing the amount of fruits, vegetables, and other plant foods as an easy way of boosting the amounts of vitamins and minerals in our diets, and suggest focusing on living a healthy lifestyle rather than trying to find the answer to long life in a bottle.

A new study has shown how vitamin supplements are mostly useless.

Of the four most commonly used supplements - multivitamins, vitamin D, calcium, and vitamin C - none had a significant effect in regards heart health, either in preventing heart attacks or strokes, or in preventing death. Across 21 trials of antioxidant mixtures, participants actually showed a slightly higher risk of dying during the study period.

Basically: a healthy diet trumps supplements unless you've been advised to take one by a doctor or another health expert.

Folic acid and B vitamins with folic acid were found to possibly reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke. But with no causal mechanism, or even more specific information, the evidence is not sufficient to state that anybody should or should not take supplements with these components. Those included Vitamin D, C, calcium, and multivitamins, among other similar supplements.

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We were surprised to find so few positive effects of the most common supplements that people consume.

Reference Supplemental Vitamins and Minerals for CVD Prevention and Treatment.

He continued: "Given these positive findings, we are disappointed by the negative attention being given toward the most popular supplements because the research found they do not prevent cardiovascular disease".

The study was published in the latest issue of Journal of the American College of Cardiology released this week (29th May 2018).

The research mirrors a 2013 study that also suggested supplements have no long-term health benefits for health adults, but could be potentially harmful.

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Meanwhile, Dr Rosemary Stanton from the University of New South Wales said it wasn't a good idea for people to continue taking supplements.

The exception might be folic acid, which is a synthetic form of folate (vitamin B-9).

MacKay added that consumers should be aware that cardiovascular disease "is multifactorial and can not be prevented by dietary supplements in isolation".

A May 7 JACC study from the CSPPT also showed hypertensive adults with low platelet count who took a daily pill of both enalapril and folic acid daily saw a 73 percent risk reduction in first stroke when compared to enalapril alone.

Instead of being overly dependent on supplements, the team recommends simply eating healthy.

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