Dietary Supplements May Cause Serious Health Issues
Taking dietary supplements can cause potentially serious health problems, according to a study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Mineral intake may be too high for dietary supplements users.
"People need to choose supplements to help meet, but not exceed, the recommended daily intake levels," said Regan Bailey, a nutrition researcher at the National Institute of Health, who led the study.
Bailey and her colleagues used dietary surveys to examine mineral intake among 8,860 men and women who participated in a major government health survey between 2003 and 2006.
The study found men and women who reported using dietary supplements containing eight important minerals -- calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, phosphorus, copper, potassium and selenium -- were much less likely to be getting inadequate amounts of those minerals from the foods they ate than were people who did not take supplements.
The correlation was strongest for women, who are more likely than men to take supplements.
Furthermore, people who take dietary supplements are more likely to eat better and live healthier lifestyles in comparison to those who did not take supplements, Bailey noted.
Calcium intake often fell short of recommended levels, even among supplement users, the NIH researchers noted.