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Jury out on vitamins' use against heart disease, cancer

Published on Feb 25, 2014 6:20 AM

NEW YORK (REUTERS) - There is not enough scientific evidence to recommend that people take multivitamins or other nutritional supplements to prevent cancer or heart disease, according to a United States (US) government-backed health panel.

The final recommendations, published on Monday in the Annals of Internal Medicine, largely mirror draft guidelines that were released by the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) in November. They do not apply to people with known vitamin deficiencies or chronic illnesses.

"Because so much money is spent and so many people think they're doing themselves good by taking multivitamins, we really do need research to find out if that is the case," Dr Virginia Moyer, who chairs the USPSTF, told Reuters Health.

Ms Moyer is also the vice president for maintenance of certification and quality at the American Board of Pediatrics in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

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