That's because multivitamins lack a number of beneficial compounds for wellness, including phytonutrients, and fiber, found in plant foods. Multivitamins also typically fall short of the recommend daily amount of calcium and other important vitamins and minerals, too.
CalciumMagnesiumVitamin A (as carotenoids)Vitamins CVitamin E "Certain groups run even higher risks for vitamin and mineral deficits," says Jeffrey Blumberg, PhD, director of the Antioxidants Research Laboratory, and professor of nutrition at Tufts University.
Multivitamin/Mineral Supplements and Chronic Disease Prevention from the National Prada Purse Sale
So why the difference of opinion?
For instance, shortfalls of iron in the childbearing years may lead to anemia. Too little folic acid very early in pregnancy increases the risk of neural tube defects in developing babies. And vitamin B12 deficits, responsible for irreversible nerve damage and faulty cognition, are more likely in people who avoid animal foods, and in people over the age of 50, whose bodies absorb synthetic vitamin B12 better than the naturally occurring form.
Stampfer, who was a presenter at the NIH conference, says the panel excluded smaller trials and observational studies done with multivitamins, looking only at the results of large randomized trials, considered the gold standard of clinical Prada Sunglasses For Girls
Read on to find out why multivitamins matter, tips for picking the best one, and how to bypass potential problems from the most popular dietary supplements.
"In bridging nutrient gaps, it is perfectly plausible to think that multivitamins help head off chronic conditions, including osteoporosis and heart disease," Blumberg says.
Institutes of Health.
In a group of more than 88,000 women, those who took multivitamins for 15 years or more significantly reduced the risk of colon cancer as compared to those who took multivitamins for less time. The women were part of the Nurses' Health Study at the Harvard School of Public Health. The research was published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
A Word on Who Should Avoid MultivitaminsIf you're being treated for cancer, or have a history of cancer, talk with your doctor before taking a multivitamin. Dietary supplements could affect your cancer treatment.
Vitamin Short Fall: Who's at Risk?Over time, small discrepancies in nutrient intakes can prove problematic for a person, particularly for women in their childbearing years, strict vegetarians, and the elderly.
According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2005, adults are often deficient in:
"When we compare recommendations for vitamin and mineral intakes to actual consumption, many Americans do not even come close to getting what they need for several nutrients," says Meir Stampfer, MD, DrPH, professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School.
Other studies highlight the connection between multivitamin use and well being, too.
Multivitamins: Bridging (Some) Nutrient GapsA balanced diet goes a long way to getting the vitamins and minerals you need to feel good and head off health problems. Trouble is, very few people eat right every day.
Think of multivitamins as an insurance policy, but don't fool yourself into thinking dietary supplements measure up to the benefits of maintaining a healthy body weight, eating right, and getting regular physical activity, Blumberg tells WebMD.
Making the Most Out of Multivitamins
Can Multivitamins Curb Chronic Disease?Don't bet on multivitamins to keep you free of heart disease, cancer, and other chronic illness. That's the recommendation of a 2006 State of the Science Conference on Prada Backpack Review
More from WebMD Four Heavenly, Heart Healthy EntreesIdeal Weight or Happy Weight?'Superfoods' That May Help Ward off Heart Disease, Cancer, Cholesterol, and MoreTips for Losing 100 Pounds
Stampfer and Blumberg advocate multivitamins as a way Prada Bags Saffiano to shore up diets low in nutrients. But, they warn that multivitamins are dietary supplements, not substitutes for healthy eating.
That's because dietary supplements could fuel the growth of cancer cells by providing the extra nutrients they need to reproduce.
However, the NIH opinion contradicts earlier findings, including a 2002 study from the Harvard School of Medicine published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
"Overall, multivitamins are a minor component of good health, but worthy ones," Stampfer says.
However, randomized trials tend to be shorter than other types of studies, which leaves less time to see results.
Another study found that taking a multivitamin reduced the risk of first time heart attack in a group of Swedish men and women aged 45 to 70.
In the report, the 13 member panel concluded that more research is needed before suggesting multivitamin use to head off disease in healthy, non pregnant people.
Millions of Americans take multivitamins in the name of better health. In spite of conflicting reports that these supplements combat chronic conditions, top health experts recommend daily multivitamins for nearly everyone.
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