CPH Post


Multivitamins are a waste of money

Supplements may not be doing any harm, but they sure aren't doing any good

Eat the orange instead of popping all those pills (Photo: Colourbox)

December 18, 2013

by RW

Danes are among the leaders in Europe when it comes to gulping down multivitamins and other types of vitamin supplements, According to a just-published study, they could be wasting their time and money.

“Unless there is a specific need, vitamin supplements are a waste of money,” Inge Tetens, a professor of human nutrition at DTU Fødevareinstituttet, the national food Institute, told Jyllands-Posten newspaper.

While the latest study supports the conclusions of many others – that there is zero benefit to be gained from dosing up on vitamins – Danes continue to spend a fortune on daily vitamins.

“Our consumption is generally high compared to the rest of Europe,” said Tetens. “We seem content to continue to take vitamins, even though we don’t really know why we are doing so.”

The study, which was published in the respected journal  ‘Annals of Internal Medicine’, showed that despite claims to the contrary, multivitamins have no positive effects chronic conditions, the risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease, cognitive function, heart attack or life expectancy.

Even though supplments have been shown to have a positive effect in places in Asia and Africa, where parts of the population are undernourished and suffer from a poor diet, a commentary published along with the study entitled ‘Enough is enough : Stop wasting money on vitamins and mineral supplements’ encouraged doctors in developed countries with good food supplies to advise patients to stop taking supplements. 

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