HEALTH

Study: Limited evidence for multivitamins in preventing cancer or CVD

BY Michael Johnsen

PHILADELPHIA — According to an article published in Annals of Internal Medicine Monday, a systematic review of published studies found insufficient evidence that vitamin and mineral supplements are effective for preventing cardiovascular disease, cancer or mortality from those diseases in healthy adults. 

While two studies included in the review found lower overall cancer incidence in men who took a multivitamin for over 10 years, those same studies showed no cancer protection benefit for women. “Cancer is a complex disease, and the fact that there is even some, albeit limited, evidence that a simple multivitamin could prevent cancer demonstrates promise and should give consumers added incentive to keep taking their multivitamins," advised Duffy MacKay, VP scientific and regulatory affairs for the Council for Responsible Nutrition, in response to the article. 

The authors of the systematic review noted that trials designed to evaluate drug therapy "might not be ideally suited to evaluating nutrients." Researchers also cautioned that these results should not be overgeneralized and that more research is needed before it can be determined whether or not multivitamin supplementation is beneficial. 

"As the researchers have indicated, there is limited evidence for multivitamins in preventing cancer or cardiovascular disease; however, we believe the paucity of clinical trial evidence should not be misinterpreted as a lack of benefit for the multivitamin," cautioned MacKay. "We know for sure that multivitamins can fill nutrient gaps, and as so many people are not even reaching the recommended dietary allowances for many nutrients, that’s reason enough to add an affordable and convenient multivitamin to their diets."

 

 

 

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WSJ: J&J temporarily suspends shipments to Amazon.com over third-party resellers

BY Michael Johnsen

NEW YORK — Johnson & Johnson had temporarily stopped distribution of its products to Amazon.com over concerns that Amazon hasn’t done enough to prevent third-party resellers from selling damaged or expired J&J products on Amazon’s site, according to a report published Sunday by The Wall Street Journal

Citing people familiar with the matter, the WSJ reported that J&J had stopped shipping products including Tylenol, Band-Aids and Johnson’s baby products. However, J&J has resumed shipping those products to Amazon.com in recent days. 

In its annual report, Amazon.com warns that it may be unable to prevent resellers from selling damaged or expired product. But Amazon.com still guarantees those purchases and will reimburse buyers of damaged or defective items up to $2,500.

 

 

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FDA to USPlabs: Recall adulterated supplement products from the market

BY Michael Johnsen

SILVER SPRING, Md. — The Food and Drug Administration on Sunday announced that USPlabs of Dallas is recalling certain OxyElite Pro dietary supplement products that the company markets. 

The company took this action after receiving a letter from the FDA stating that the products have been linked to liver illnesses, and that there is a reasonable probability that the products are adulterated.  

The letter also notified USPlabs that if the company did not initiate a voluntary recall, the FDA could by law order the company to immediately stop distributing the dietary supplements and immediately notify other parties to stop distributing the dietary supplements. The action marks the second time the FDA has exercised its recall authority under the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act by sending such a letter.

“We took this step to ensure that adulterated and harmful products do not reach the American public,” stated deputy commissioner for Foods and Veterinary Medicine Michael Taylor. “We will continue to work with our state, industry and regulatory partners to prevent such products from reaching the public.”

In a review of 46 medical records submitted to the FDA by the Hawaii Department of Health, the records indicated that 27 patients, or 58%, had taken a dietary supplement labeled as OxyElite Pro prior to becoming ill. Seventeen of the 27 patients (63%) reported that OxyElite Pro was the only dietary supplement they were taking. One death has occurred among these patients, another patient has required a liver transplant, and others await liver transplants. For a list of products affected, please see the FDA News Release.

In addition to the products being recalled, the FDA continues to advise consumers not to use any dietary supplements labeled OxyElite Pro or VERSA-1.

 

 

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