Saturday, January 19, 2013

Vitameatavegamin: The Effectiveness of Vitamins Explored

My opinion:  I think this is just another piece of evidence that vitamins do not always help - sure, they might be useful for some things, but the real questions may be, just how much do vitamin companies exaggerate their products, and what evidence do they have to back up their claims?  I remember studies done on vitamin C supplements - since some people already intake so much vitamin C per day, then the additional dose is useless - excess vitamin c comes out in the urine.  So, I personally think the issue has two sides to it - the ineffectiveness of vitamins and the potential overuse of them.  Though this might not be the most serious topic to examine (dangerous drugs come first), has this been left out of the limelight for too long?  Feel free to comment.

From: http://www.deccanherald.com/content/306210/vitamin-d-doesnt-reduce-knee.html

Vitamin D Doesn’t Reduce Knee Pain

Nicolas Bakalar, Jan 19, 2013, NYTNS :
VITAL SIGNS
Osteoarthritis is an incurable condition with few effective treatments beyond pain control.

Some observational evidence suggests that vitamin D supplements might slow progression of the disease.

But a two-year randomized placebo-controlled study found that vitamin D did not reduce knee pain or restore cartilage.

In an article published in The Journal of the American Medical Association last week, researchers described a study of 146 men and women with painful knee arthritis who were randomly assigned to take vitamin D supplements or placebos.

Vitamin D was given in quantities sufficient to raise blood levels to 36 nanograms per milliliter, a level considered sufficient for good health.

Knee pain decreased slightly in both groups, but there were no differences in the amount of cartilage lost, bone mineral density or joint deterioration as measured by X-rays and M.R.I. scans.

The lead author, Dr. Timothy McAlindon, chief of the division of rheumatology at Tufts Medical Center, said taking vitamin D in higher doses or for longer periods might make a difference, but he’s not hopeful.

“Although there were lots of promising observational data, we find no efficacy of vitamin D for knee osteoarthritis,” he said. “There may be reasons to take vitamin D supplements, but knee osteoarthritis is not one of them.”

3 comments:

  1. the article on this study is worthless. What form of Vitamin D was used and at what amount? Very important things to know before deciding D is not useful. Second, how many people have died from vitamin abuse in the last few years. The answer is very few. Now how many people have died from prescription drug abuse over the last few years. Prescription drugs now surpass illegal drugs in causing deaths. So why are we worried about vitamins.
    Pharmaceutical companies are worried because people are looking to supplements to improve their health not prescription drugs and this costs pharma money.

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  2. I think the main issue is that modern medicine needs to learn that the body must be treated holistically in order to cure disease. Simply supplementing with vitamin d alone is not likely to address all the factors leading to osteoarthritis. Also, 36 ng/mL is just barely above a clinically deficient level of D3. I wonder if the results may have been different if the D3 levels were upped to at least 80 ng/mL.

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  3. Gotta love Lisa's false comparisons, as if vitamins were equivalent to prescription medications in their ability to help and harm patients. Back massages don't kill people, but back surgery can do a lot more to actual spinal lesions in terms of help and harm. It's called weighing the benefits versus the risks, something all doctors are trained to do. And I love how big pharma is supposedly worried about vitamins when big pharma actually owns many of the companies that make vitamins and supplements which are free from FDA regulation and completely available to the gullible worried well to throw their money at. Why did you choose 80ng/mL, Mr. Garza? 36ng/mL is derived from multiple studies across broad population bases that are statistically optimized for health benefits while avoiding harm. The scientists didn't pull a random number from their asses. More does not equal better, sir.

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