Vitamins are a crucial micronutrient for the human body, and they carry out many tasks that otherwise could not be done without them. Many people consume multivitamins in an attempt to reach adequate levels, or to fill in gaps under circumstances when obtaining vitamins from the diet is not an option. Although multivitamins can prove to be helpful, in some cases they really aren’t doing much, even when poor nutrition is involved. According to recent research, it is suggested that the long-term use of multivitamins does not reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in men, regardless of baseline nutritional status.
In an effort to determine if multivitamins prevent the risk of heart disease, a group of scientists used the Physician’s Health Study II in a randomized clinical trial. They found that baseline nutritional status does not influence the effect of randomized long-term multivitamin use on major CVD events.1 The participants included 13,316 male physicians, 50 or older, that were observed for follow-ups after 2.3 years. Major cardiovascular events, such as nonfatal myocardial infarction, nonfatal stroke, and CVD mortality were included in the main outcomes and measures. This study found that there was no consistent evidence showing that modifications in the baseline nutritional status of the physicians had an effect on the multivitamin use on CVD endpoints. Ultimately, the study concluded that baseline nutritional status does not influence the effect of randomized long-term multivitamin use on major CVD events.1
This opens up new research areas about poor nutrition status and the use of supplementation to make up for it. As new studies become available to us about multivitamin use, it is important to keep in mind the positive or negative effects (if any) they have in relation to overall health and wellness.
- Rautiainen S, Gaziano JM, Christen WG, et al. Effect of baseline nutritional status on long-term multivitamin use and cardiovascular disease risk: A secondary analysis of the physicians’ health study II randomized clinical trial. JAMA Cardiol. 2017. http://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamacardiology/fullarticle/2615261. Accessed May 1, 2017. doi: 10.1001/jamacardio.2017.0176.