- “It is important to determine the optimal combination of nutritional supplements because not all are beneficial and some may even have harmful effects,” said study leader Professor Simin Liu.
- “For the first time, we have created a comprehensive, evidence-based, integrative map to describe and quantify the potential effects of dietary supplements,” he says.
- These results could be used as a basis for future clinical trials to better investigate the effects of specific combinations of dietary supplements on cardiovascular health, he said.
Many people in the medical world believe that a diet rich in antioxidants such as amino acids, omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin C is beneficial for health and longevity. These micronutrients reduce oxidative stress, one of the main causes of cardiovascular disease. Diets known to be heart-healthy, e.g Mediterranean diet, there are also naturally rich foods antioxidants. However, the beneficial effects of these micronutrients, especially when taken as dietary supplements, have long been controversial for cardiovascular health due to inconsistent results.
A a new meta-analysis (a study reviewing previous research on the topic) published Journal of the American College of Cardiologyprovides some explanation.
Omega-3, folic acid, magnesium… their benefits for the heart have been proven
“Research on dietary supplements has focused primarily on the health effects of one or more vitamins and minerals. We decided to comprehensively and systematically evaluate all publicly available research.”said Simin Liu, professor of epidemiology and medicine at Brown University (USA) and lead author of the study. communicated.
In total, the results of 884 previous studies on the effects of dietary supplements, involving a total of more than 883,000 individuals, were analyzed. The result: Scientists confirm that certain dietary supplements reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
This includes fatty acids Omega 3, which reduce mortality from cardiovascular diseases; iFolic acid, which reduces the risk of stroke; and coenzyme Q10, an antioxidant sometimes sold as a dietary supplement as CoQ10, which reduces all-cause mortality. Omega-6 fatty acids, L-arginine, L-citrulline, vitamin D, magnesium, zinc, alpha lipoic acid, melatonin, catechin, curcumin, flavanol, genistein and quercetin have also been shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Vitamins C, D, and E: These supplements do not affect heart health
In contrast, other nutritional supplements do not provide any benefit or even have negative effects. Vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin E, and selenium had no effect on long-term cardiovascular outcomes or risk of type 2 diabetes, while beta-carotene supplementation increased all-cause mortality.
According to the researchers, the findings highlight the need for more personalized nutritional interventions with more specific combinations of nutritional supplements that have proven health benefits. However, additional, more in-depth studies are still needed to better investigate the long-term effects of dietary supplements.