You have most likely come across articles or news items claiming that a certain vitamin supplement. For example, it may say that vitamin D helps to better control diabetes. Many companies are marketing their products using these claims!
But, once you read this post you will find, that in most of these cases, research is not conclusive enough. Therefore expert health agencies do not recommend these supplements in management of lifestyle diseases, at least not yet!
Read below to know more!
Cancer: Role of vitamin A supplements have been investigated in prostate and lung cancer, but no conclusions are available so far
Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD): It is a disorder of the eye which leads to progressive blindness. In moderate cases of AMD or in those with advanced AMD in one eye, a supplement containing Beta carotene, Vitamin E, Vitamin C, Zinc and Copper was found to reduce the risk of development of severe disease
Current research on vitamin C is focused on its protective function in the following conditions:
Vitamin C supplements (in doses higher than 200 mg/day) can reduce the chances of catching a cold, especially in smokers, people doing heavy activity and elderly people. But after the onset of cold, vitamin C supplements do not reduce the duration or severity of the cold
Results from most clinical trials suggest that modest vitamin C supplementation alone or with other nutrients offers no benefit in the prevention of cancer, cardiovascular diseases or cataract
Research suggests a promising role of high dose injected vitamin C in treatment of some cancers, but not of oral intake
Current research on vitamin D is focused on is protective properties in the following positions:
However, no conclusive evidence is available currently. No recommendations for vitamin D supplements in order to manage these diseases are made
Vitamins of B complex are soluble in water and in general are well tolerated at high doses also. Therefore, no Upper Limits (ULs) are there for B1, B2 and B12 oral intake
Current research on role of various vitamin of B complex is focused on the potentially positive impact on life style diseases, cancers etc.
Below is the summary of the research so far:
Folate and Vitamin B12, alone or as a vitamin B complex supplement (in doses much higher than the usual multivitamin supplement) have been reported to have protective effect on:
But evidence is inconclusive and hence currently no indications and dosage of supplementation with folate or vitamin B12 exist for any of these except for NTD. Women in reproductive age, especially if they plan to have children soon should get at least 400 mcg of folate supplement every day for 1-3 months
The protective role of thiamine is being investigated for:
But evidence is inconclusive and there is no guideline for use and dosage of thiamine supplementation in these diseases
Probiotics, omega 3 supplements such as fish oil, fiber and phytosterol supplements have been recommended in special populations, to know more, go to: ‘Supplements recommended for special populations’
CHECK OUT: Our references for recommendations on supplements