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Vitamin Supplement "Facts" That The Media Got Wrong

Written by Wellness Club on May 6, 2015 – 7:46 pm -

By Dr. Dana Myatt

 

There’s a reason that the “mainstream media” has earned a more accurate name “the lamestream media.” Actual journalism is a lost art – most “reporters” now craft their stories to satisfy an agenda – either theirs or their employers. Here are a few examples:

1.) What the Headline said: "Vitamin Pills a Waste of Money"

What the research actually said:

To quote the article directly: “Two large trials [with 27,658 individuals] reported lower cancer incidence in men taking a multivitamin for more than 10 years. High quality studies were scant…" (meaning: not enough data to draw good conclusions about the rest). (1)

Dr. Myatt’s comment: It should be noted that the "multivitamins" examined in the study were low-potency ("one a day") supplements, something that has never been proven to be of much benefit to anyone except those severely deficient.

2.) What the Headline said: "Multivitamins of no benefit to seniors."

What the research actually said:

To quote the article directly: "Multivitamins and mineral supplements were found to reduce the mean annual number of days spent with infection (three studies) by 17.5." (2)

Dr. Myatt’s comment: Again, the "multivitamins" examined in the study were low-potency ("one a day") supplements, something that has never been proven to be of much benefit to anyone except those severely deficient. But even at low potency, there was a decreased risk of infection in the elderly.

3.) What the Headline said: "Vitamins are linked to increased risk of death."

What the research actually said:

The study (if you can call it that) — asking folks to report from memory what supplements they had taken years previously — actually found the following:

  • B complex vitamins were associated with a 7% reduction in mortality
  • Vitamin C intake associated with a 4% reduction in mortality
  • Vitamin D intake associated with an 8% reduction in mortality
  • Magnesium intake associated with a 3% reduction in mortality
  • Selenium intake associated with a 3% reduction in mortality
  • Zinc intake associated with a 3% reduction in mortality

Dr. Myatt’s comment: This study was so poorly done, and the "findings" so misreported, that I wrote an entire article about it here: Vitamins Linked to Increased Risk of Death ?

Now for the Positive Studies Your May Not Have Seen

 

1.) Multivitamins Decrease Women’s Heart Disease Death.

According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the "multivitamins don’t help" argument is far from over. Women who took multivitamin-mineral supplements for three years or more were significantly less likely to die from heart disease. (3)

2.) Multivitamin users have lower risk of dying from stroke.

To quote the article directly: "Conclusions— Multivitamin use, particularly frequent use, was associated with reduced risk of total and ischemic stroke mortality among Japanese people with lower intake of fruits and vegetables." (4)

The number of studies showing positive benefit in multivitamin use are so overwhelming that we have written about them numerous times. Please see the following articles with multiple references.

A Dozen Proven Reasons to Take a Good Multiple:

Give Me One Good Reason to Take a Multiple

 

Dr Myatt’s Bottom Line and Summary

  1. The preponderance of evidence is far in favor of taking a multiple vitamin/mineral supplement for health.
  2. "One a day" multiples are of limited value in improving health. Please see "Maxi Multi" for a discussion of optimal potency multiple vitamin formulas.
  3. Regular users have far more benefit than casual users. Take your multiple every day.

 

References:

1. Fortmann SP, Burda BU, Senger CA, Lin JS, Whitlock EP. Vitamin and mineral supplements in the primary prevention of cardiovascular disease and cancer: an updated systematic evidence review for the US Preventive Services Task Force. Ann Intern Med. 2013 Dec 17;159(12):824-34.

2. El-Kadiki A, Sutton AJ. Role of multivitamins and mineral supplements in preventing infections in elderly people: systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials.BMJ. 2005 Apr 16;330(7496):871

3. Bailey RL, Fakhouri TH, Park Y, et al. Multivitamin-mineral use is associated with reduced risk of cardiovascular disease mortality among women in the United States. J Nutr. 2015 Mar;145(3):572-8.

4. Shigeki Yamada, MD; Akio Koizumi, MD; Hiroyasu Iso, MD; Yasuhiko Wada, MD, et al. Risk Factors for Fatal Subarachnoid Hemorrhage: The Japan Collaborative Cohort Study.

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