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Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Supplements: 2 Studies, 4 Experts Weigh In

More than 150 million Americans take dietary supplements, according to the Council for Responsible Nutrition, a supplement industry trade group. Is it worth all the effort?

Two new studies do zilch to clear the everyday-wellness water.

Researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts found that vitamins E and C did nothing to reduce chances of heart disease in men. Another study of postmenopausal women enrolled in the Women's Health Initiative found calcium and vitamin D don’t protect against invasive breast cancer.

So what do the experts do? CNN interviewed four leading wellness experts to see what vitamins they take. Here’s what they found:
  • Andrew Weil, director, Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine: 1. daily multivitamin, 2. vitamin D, 3. magnesium, 4. Co-Q-10 and 5. juvenon.
  • Christiane Northrup, author of The Secret Pleasures of Menopause: 1. Antioxidant supplement, 2. fish oil, 3. calcium, 4.magnesium, 5. Co-Q-10 and 6. Vitamin D.
  • Walter Willett, chairman, Department of Nutrition, Harvard School of Public Health: 1. Multivitamin 2. Vitamin D.
  • Melina Jampolis, physician: 1. Multivitamin 2. Calcium 3. Vitamin, 4. Omega 3.
What about the study findings? Weil says, not to worry: "I believe vitamins E and C are important as part of our antioxidant defenses, even if we have not yet documented specific preventive effects."

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