Multivitamins do not protect against cardiovascular disorders

Experts said multivitamins did not have the same benefits as eating fruit and vegetables

The meta-analysis included 18 studies published in 1970-2016 (11 from the US, four from Europe, and three from Japan) with a total of more than 2 million participants from the general population.

Some people reportedly use them to prevent heart disease, the researchers noted.

The research community has been "quite active for a long time informing about the no associations among healthy populations, but still the sales of dietary supplements continue to increase, with multivitamin supplements among the most popular ones".

“One of the big problems with multivitamin use is that it could deviate the public from following the measures that are proven to be beneficial for cardiovascular health, including eating fruits and vegetables, and doing more exercise” said Kim, a researcher at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

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In the study, Kim and his colleagues reported that after accounting for both smoking histories and physical activity habits, they saw no evidence that taking a multivitamin or mineral supplements lowers the risk for dying from heart disease, experiencing a stroke, or dying from a stroke.

A new meta-study, gathering data from over two million participants, has concluded that multivitamins and mineral supplements do not improve cardiovascular health or protect against heart attack and stroke.

"If one does not have a confirmed vitamin deficiency, there is no role for vitamin/mineral supplements in cardiovascular disease prevention", he said.

Rebecca McManamon, consultant dietitian and spokeswoman for the British Dietetic Association, said: "This reiterates the message that instead of supplements, in the United Kingdom we are still not all eating enough fruit and vegetables and we need to keep driving to eat more, as five portions a day or more are linked with a reduced risk of heart disease, as well as reducing risk of some cancers".

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"We meticulously evaluated the body of scientific evidence".

According to the study, the nutritional supplement industry will be worth more than US$278 billion (AU$374 billion) globally by 2024, and according to the United States Food and Drug Administration, the agency does not need to "approve" dietary supplements for safety or effectiveness before they're sold on, unlike drugs.

"Simply put, multivitamins and mineral supplements do not improve cardiovascular health outcomes, so [they] should not be taken for that objective", added Kim.

The researchers included supplements that contained more than three vitamins or minerals.

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The relationship between dietary supplements and cardiovascular disease has been debated for many years, despite the findings of many studies that there is no association. "But based on the research done so far, there is no reason to take a multivitamin to reduce your risk of developing CVD".

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