Supplements a “Waste of Money” for Disease (Cancer) Prevention?

Over half of Americans take supplements, many with the hope of preventing chronic disease and staying mentally sharp. Yet it’s a waste of money, writes a group of physicians in a strongly-worded editorial published today.Supp_canstockphoto7372360

The editorial — stating “Enough is Enough” in the title — was published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

For cancer risk, AICR’s expert report and its continuous updates also found there is not enough evidence showing supplements offer protection. AICR recommends not relying on supplements, instead getting in your cancer-protective phytochemicals and nutrients from food.

The editorial cites three major articles. One was an analysis focusing on supplement use and cancer, along with cardiovascular disease, and mortality. That analysis was by the United States Preventive Services Task Force and published last month: we wrote about it here. Continue reading

Major Study: Multivitamins for Cancer Prevention (in Men)?

New results published online today from the Physicians’ Health Study II (PHS II), showed that participants who took a daily multivitamin for 11 years had 8 percent fewer cancers compared to participants who took a daily placebo. The study is a large randomized controlled trial involving over 14,600 male physicians aged 50 and over.

The study is published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Though the reduction in incidence is relatively small, it is significant, and the PHS II is a large, rigorous and well-respected double-blinded randomized trial. (In the study, one group took a multivitamin and one group took a placebo; neither the subjects nor the doctors knew which was which.) Continue reading