Joint Health


Benefits of More than Just a Multivitamin


Arthritis: The #1 Cause of Disability Eating a balanced diet rich in whole grains, fruits, and vegetables; getting plenty of sleep and regular exercise; and managing stress are all important lifestyle strategies to help support and maintain optimal health. But did you know there's more you can do?


Today, many leading experts in the fields of medicine, biochemistry, and nutrition believe wise nutrition supplementation can make a big difference in your health.


  Following a fairly recent National Institutes of Health conference, Dr. Walter Willett and Dr. Meir Stampfer, two prominent physician researchers from Harvard Medical School, joined forces with Dr. Bruce Ames, professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at the University of California, Berkeley, and Dr. Joyce McCann, staff scientist at the Children’s Hospital & Research Center Oakland, to issue the following statement in regard to their recommendations for supplementing with a multivitamin.

Of course everyone would agree that all persons should be encouraged to eat a good diet, but we are far from achieving this goal, especially among the poor. In most cases, a simple way to improve micronutrient status is to take a multivitamin/mineral.” 1

In fact, taking MORE than just a multivitamin/multimineral may be in order.

In a first-of-its-kind Landmark Study published in Nutrition Journal, long-term multi-supplement users were more likely to have optimal concentrations of several key biomarkers of health and a lower risk of developing a number of health conditions compared to non-supplement users or those who took only a single multivitamin daily2.

Here are just a few of the positive health benefits seen among long-term multi-supplement users:

  • 33% lower triglyceride levels
  • 59% lower C-reactive protein levels
  • 11% lower ratio of total cholesterol to LDL cholesterol
  • 36% lower homocysteine levels
  • 39% less likely to have elevated blood pressure
  • 73% less likely to have diabetes

When asked about what supplements they took, 87% of subjects reported taking 20 or more different supplements daily for at least 20 years, including a comprehensive multivitamin/ multimineral, additional B vitamins and vitamin C, carotenoids, vitamin D, calcium, probiotics, and omega-3 fatty acids. Although this study was cross sectional in its design (showing only an association between supplement use and health outcomes), the results were nonetheless impressive. More research to confirm these findings in other groups of long-term supplement users is sure to come and will only help to strengthen the evidence that taking more than just your daily multivitamin makes the most sense when attempting to optimize your health.

1Ames, B.N., McCann, J.C., Stampfer, M.J., Willett, W.C. Evidence-based decision making on micronutrients and chronic disease: long-term randomized controlled trials are not enough. [Letter to the Editor]. Am J Clin Nutr 2007;86:522-525.
2Block, G.M., Jensen, CD., Norkus, EB., et al. Usage patterns, health and nutritional status of long-term multiple dietary supplement users: a cross-sectional study. Nutrition J, 2007;(6) 30:1-11.

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