Blog Site Discontinued June 23, 2017

Welcome. This blog site, healthy eating and food safety, has been discontinued as of June 23, 2017. I look forward to your comments and feedback regarding use of this tool to disseminate educational information.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Supplements May Not Live Up to Marketing Claims

Supplements May Not Live Up to Marketing Claims
A new study based on the Iowa Women’s Health Study calls into question the common belief that dietary supplements are a harmless way to provide “insurance” against the shortcomings of poor dietary habits. Data on the use of dietary supplements were gathered in 1986, 1997, and 2004 and most of the 38,000+ women in this study (85 percent) reported using one or more products in 2004. The average age of these women was 61 when the study began in 1986.

In this large study of older women, most dietary supplements were not associated with a significant change in mortality – positive or negative. However, some vitamins and minerals (multivitamins, vitamin B6, folic acid, magnesium, zinc, copper and most notably iron) were associated with increased total mortality rates. On the positive side, calcium had some evidence of possible benefits in terms of mortality.

The authors of this study state: “It is not advisable to make a casual statement of excess risk based on these observational data; however, it is noteworthy that dietary supplements, unlike drugs, do not require rigorous RCT (randomized control trial) testing, and observational studies are often the best-available method for assessing the safety of long-term use. Based on existing evidence, we see little justification for the general and widespread use of dietary supplements. We recommend they be used with strong medically based cause, such as symptomatic nutrient deficiency disease.”

Source: UW-Extension Nutrition for Family Living Newsletter

No comments:

Post a Comment