Sorry But That Multivitamin Is Not a Magical Elixir of Life

For many health-conscious Americans, taking a multivitamin is a morning ritual on par with OJ and using the stairs. It's widely assumed they confer myriad health benefits and also shiny hair. Unfortunately, there is a growing body of evidence that they might just be a big waste of your money.

Between this and the FDA cracking down on B.S. "antibacterial soap," it's like I don't even know which products to trust blindly anymore.

Reuters reports that, according to recent studies, multivitamins don't do much to prevent or stall the progression of heart disease, nor do they reduce the risk of cancer very much (and even then it's only in men). On Monday, researchers announced that, according to a 12-year study of more than 6,000 male doctors, multivitamins made no difference to memory function, either.

It's not that they're bad for you, the deputy editor of the Annals of Internal Medicine told Reuters; they're just not doing much good, either:

"People over time and particularly people in the United States have been led to believe that vitamin and mineral supplements will make them healthier, and they're looking for a magic pill," Dr. Cynthia Mulrow said.

"People . . . should be active, should not (overeat), should avoid excessive alcohol and should not be spending money on these pills, these vitamins and minerals," she added.

In other words no, you cannot make up for your diet of Funyuns and seltzer with Centrum for Women. I'm just as sad as you are, but together we can get through this.

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