Vitamins and Minerals

A 2002 Journal of the American Medical Association review of vitamin use in chronic disease concluded, "We recommend that all adults take one multivitamin daily. This practice is justified mainly by the known and suspected benefits of supplemental folate and vitamins B12, B6, and D in preventing cardiovascular disease, cancer, and osteoporosis and because multivitamins at that dose are safe and inexpensive" (Fairfield and Fletcher, 2002a, 2002b). At least 84% of U.S. residents use vitamin supplements regularly, and they probably need them. Only 20% to 30% of the American population met the goal of at least five servings of fruits and vegetables daily (Flood and Schatzkin, 2000).

Table 52-5 lists several vitamins and minerals, their uses, contraindications, and efficacy information when available. Dose recommendations for vitamins and minerals are now referred to as reference daily intakes (RDIs) and continue to be debated, especially for certain trace minerals. (For a full list of RDIs and food sources of various nutrients, see Mahan et al., 2004.)

Your Heart and Nutrition

Your Heart and Nutrition

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