Excessive calcium tablet consumption increases risk of cancer

A link was found with calcium supplements but not calcium in food

"Our results support the idea that. there are beneficial associations with nutrients from foods that aren't seen with supplements", seniorstudy author Dr. Fang Fang Zhang, an associate professor at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University in MA, said in a statement.

The study used a nationally representative sample comprised of data from more than 27,000 USA adults ages 20 and older to evaluate the association between dietary supplement use and death from all causes, cardiovascular disease (CVD), and cancer.

Debate as to their effectiveness has raged for years with many studies showing a supplement does not mirror the effects of when taken naturally.

During the study period, about 3,600 people died; and of these, 945 died from heart disease and 805 died from cancer. Those that mentioned that they had used dietary supplements had been requested for particulars, together with how typically they took the merchandise. "If you realize you have a deficit, then supplement, but not more than the recommended daily allowance", she said.Most people who take supplements probably aren't expecting to live longer, but hoping for more immediate results, Kumar suggested. Nutrients found in foods "can protect us from diseases, so focus on your diet rather than buying supplements".

Another shocking revelation made by the research was that if you are not deficient in Vitamin D but were still taking vitamin D supplements, you could be at an increased risk of death from all causes including cancer.

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Scientists writing in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine said cancer patients could be putting themselves in greater danger by taking calcium supplement doses higher than 1,000 milligrams per day.

Nutrients sourced from foods were monitored with 24-hour dietary recalls. Mortality outcomes were obtained for each participant through linkage to the National Death Index through December 31, 2011, using a probabilistic match.

The good news is that vitamin A, vitamin K, magnesium, zinc and copper do seem to prevent early death, but that's only when they are consumed naturally in food. And in fact, some supplements were linked to increased risk of death. The researchers assessed whether adequate or excess nutrient intake was associated with death and whether intake from food versus supplement sources had any effect on the associations. There was no association between dietary supplement use and a lower risk of death. It's important to note that the study involved self-reported dietary supplement use and dosage, and it's unclear whether specific usage durations may influence the outcome. Each person provided information about their supplement use in the past month - more than half had used at least one - as well as their dietary habits.

"Our results support the idea that, while supplement use contributes to an increased level of total nutrient intake, there are beneficial associations with nutrients from foods that aren't seen with supplements", said Zhang.

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