Breaking News: NHANES Study - Vitamin Supplements Don’t Work?
Every major news network is talking about a new vitamin study that finds vitamin supplements don’t help people live longer. This new research discovered that vitamins not only do not extend life, but they can be harmful at high doses. This goes against what many of us have been taught – that vitamins are a great way to ensure that our nutritional needs are met. What should you believe?
Background on the NHANES Study
According to a recent study conducted by The Harris Poll, more than 4 in 5 American adults (86 percent!) take vitamins or supplements. Dr. Fang Fang Zhang, an associate professor at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, studied the impact of nutrients found in foods and the long-term effects of using dietary supplements. Zhang and his colleagues started the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) in 1999 and have collected data from 27,725 adults (over the age of 20) for a median 6 year period.
Do Vitamins and Supplements Really “Kill” You?
NO! This is a case of “fake news.” When reviewed, the study data cited above finds that the study uncovered lots of benefits of taking vitamins. The headlines may be sensational, but they are not accurate.
The NHANES study actually found a lower risk of death from any cause among those who consumed adequate amounts of vitamin K and magnesium, and a lower risk of cardiovascular death among those with adequate intakes of vitamin A, vitamin K and zinc. Excess consumption of calcium was associated with a higher risk of death from cancer.
Why Many Doctors Don’t Recommend Daily Supplements
The short answer: there is not enough research on them. NBC News interviewed Dr. Zhang, the coauthor of the NHANES study. Dr. Zhang says, “based on the totality of evidence, it’s becoming more and more clear that the regular use of dietary supplements is not beneficial in reducing the risk of mortality among the general population in the U.S.” He adds, “we need more research to look at long-term use of supplements. It would also be worth exploring whether supplements might be helpful among those who have nutritional deficiencies.”
The fact is that many Americans simply cannot get the nutrients they need from the food they eat. Whether it’s due to allergies, food preferences, lifestyle choices, or simply the environment in which our food is grown today, diet alone may not be enough. Especially in populations like kids, the elderly or those struggling with compromised health, a supplement may be the best way to ensure that their nutritional needs are met.
At Frunutta, we agree that a healthy, balanced diet is the best choice for improving and maintaining optimal health. However, with so many Americans struggling with proper nutrition, we like to think of our products as an insurance policy. Frunutta was started by a team of doctors, who consistently saw that (for a number of reasons) their patients weren’t able to rely on food alone to meet their needs.
A Dietician’s Take on the NHANES Research
Many dieticians attest that certain populations of people who are already nutrient deficient do require supplements to maintain their health. Aisling Pigott, a qualified dietitian and spokesperson for the British Dietetic Association, says that “young children can benefit from vitamins A, C and D, vegans are advised to take vitamin B12, and pregnant women should consider taking folic acid.”
Our Frunutta family includes bariatric patients who are advised by their doctors to take vitamins, those with autism who may have trouble ingesting the foods they need, and the elderly, who need a simple solution to maintain nutrient levels in their bodies. These groups of people are nutrient deficient by default and are usually not able to maintain a “healthy diet.” They do not consume the servings needed to self-sustain and need to rely on daily supplements to keep their blood-levels within a normal, beneficial range.
The Final Verdict: Should You Take Vitamin Supplements?
The best advice we can give you is to talk to your doctor. Check your blood levels and find out if you have any deficiencies. If you have several vitamin deficiencies, you run a greater risk of associated chronic diseases (such as atherosclerosis, cancer, and osteoporosis). In which case, taking vitamins and supplements has been proven to prevent and reverse these types of chronic diseases. However, if you are someone who eats a healthy, balanced diet and you do not have deficiencies - keep up the good work and set your vitamins aside!
Learn More About Frunutta Vitamins
Frunutta is a pure and clean supplement created to help provide a simple delivery method for absorption and eliminate all of the additives and impurities found in every swallowed vitamin and supplement. The quick-dissolving vitamin absorbs directly into the bloodstream by placing it under the tongue. Our products are the perfect solution for people who want vitamins and NOTHING MORE.Discover all our vitamins and supplements in our Products store.