Taking vitamin supplements does not help you live longer but may actually cause you harm, study suggests

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Taking vitamin supplements does not help you live longer but may actually cause you harm, study suggests



TAKING vitamin supplements does not help you live longer – and may actually cause harm, a study suggests.
Experts claim swapping a healthy diet for pills does not work.
Getty – Contributor Taking vitamin supplements instead of consuming a healthy diet could increase the chances of dying from cancer
Researchers found taking too much calcium in the form of supplements can increase the chances of dying from cancer.
But upping consumption of foods containing calcium is said to be safe.
Certain nutrients in food – but not supplements – were generally linked to a lower risk of all-cause and cancer death.
Scientists writing in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine said cancer patients could be putting themselves in greater danger by taking calcium supplement doses higher than 1,000 milligrams per day.
However the study, which focused on data from more than 27,000 US adults, found no evidence of an association between calcium in food and cancer death.
Lead scientist Dr Fang Fang Zhang, from Tufts University, said: “It is important to understand the role that the nutrient and its source might play in health outcomes, particularly if the effect might not be beneficial.
“Our results support the idea that, while supplement use contributes to an increased level of total nutrient intake, there are beneficial associations with nutrients from foods that aren’t seen with supplements.
“This study also confirms the importance of identifying the nutrient source when evaluating mortality outcomes.”
The scientists compared the intake of a range of nutrients with rates of death from all causes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer.
They showed that adequate consumption of vitamins A and K, as well as magnesium and zinc, reduced the risk of death.
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But this finding only applied to nutrients in food, not supplements.
High levels of calcium intake through supplements was associated with a greater risk of death from cancer.
In addition, there was evidence that unnecessary consumption of vitamin D supplements by individuals who were not deficient in the vitamin might increase the risk of death from any cause.

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