*Important*New study on women's health and vitamin supplements - magnesium mentioned

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by flutterby, Oct 10, 2011.

  1. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

  2. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    Is there any way you can copy cut and paste the article here so we don't have to join in order to read it? Thanks, it sounds very interesting!
  3. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Well-Known Member

  4. keista

    keista New Member

    Well, I agree with most of the commenters on the bloomberg article. This is really lousy reporting because it really doesn't report much. I am wondering if flutterby's article gives more statistical information.

    OK in 1986 the women were 55-69. 18 years later, these women were 73-87. Since average life expectancy for a female in the US is 80.8 years, I'm not sure what data they are extrapolating. The bloomberg article gives absolutely no relevant information.
  5. muttmeister

    muttmeister Well-Known Member

    ABC news has been covering this too. The bottom line seems to be that it is an interesting finding, but needs more study. It brings to mind the quote, "There are lies, damned lies, and statistics" (attributed to both Mark Twain and Benjamin Disraeli) The one thing they did say was that taking calcium, which a lot of us old broads do, seemed to prolong life rather than shorten it. They also said that a balanced diet is better than pills. So this is news?
  6. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I agree. Most of us die in our 80s anyway.
    However, copper is being found to be dangerous, and that is being studied more closely. I think the article said there was an 18% increase in death, as compared to 2% for magnesium.

    I'm sticking with-my supplements. They help me with-energy and to ward off colds. Also, despite the fact that I am supposedly well nourished, many of my foods have been highly processed, thereby leeched of nutrients. I have to replace those important nutrients and minerals somehow.
  7. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    Keep in in mind that outside the US, most countries regulate the use of vitamins/supplements and because of that, you need a prescription to acquire them, meaning that someone somewhere is making money (Pharmaceuticals/government/lobbyist groups, etc).

    For YEARS, the US government has been trying to do the same - regulate the use of supplements and vitamins - it is a HUGE movement among pharmaceutical companies. It would not surprise me in the least that behind all this is a group vying for corporate monetary gain. Next they will introduce "pharmaceutical grade" supplements across the board, just like they did ith Fish Oils a few years ago.

    There is ALWAYS something that will get you in the end. And if you do your research and educate yourself, you will learn which supplements your body requires. For example, I do no eat fish or dairy (except in my coffee and the occasional forced yogurt) so I take a supplemental EFA and probiotic as well as calcium. I need those. I remember my old Dr telling me not to take Vitamin E because it will kill me. Well, um, that's not really true at 400 IU, so sthu. However, if you try to eat a balanced diet and incorporate a nice variety of foods, you may not need any supplements. I choose a vegetarian whole food multi because IT MAKES ME FEEL BETTER. I can't see myself living much past 75 anyway, so I'll take my chances, thank you very much.

    We need to educate and advocate for our own health and stop relying on the doctors and governments to do it for us. I hate studies like these. Argh, can you tell it's hit a nerve? LOL.
  8. seriously

    seriously New Member

    I would suggest you consider registering for Medscape. It's free and they will not send you spam or e-mails. Medscape has an enormous scope covering virtually all health conditions and many at great depth. It has articles that are easy to read with basic information for consumers all the way to ones intended for the use of medical professionals. It's drug interaction checker is very good. I use Medscape extensively when I am researching a health condition.

    Anyway, the Medscape article has more detailed information although not the level of detail that would be in the published scientific paper.

    As studies go, it's strengths are that it covers a long period of time (1986 though 2008); three sample points (1986, 1997, 2004) and followed deaths for 4 years beyond the 3rd sample point; was a community-based study (Iowa Women's Health Study) with a very large sample (nearly 38,000 women with nearly 16,000 deaths). These strengths lend the results quite a bit of scientific credibility, assuming the results met a high level of significance (p =.005 or higher). This article doesn't report the level of significance but with that large a sample I would expect it to be quite high.

    The limitations of the study include the fact that supplement use was self-reported (potentially reducing the real-world reliability and validity of the results); the overall health or kind/degree of health problems among those taking supplements vs. those abstaining was not reported (hard to say from this article if they tried to control for this confounding variable); to what degree the use of supplements was used to offset things like poor nutrition and stress; the reported results are not stratified by cause of death (for example, cancer vs. heart disease); one assumes that accidental deaths were excluded but this summary doesn't say.

    One of the main points the authors said they were trying to assess were the long term effects of vitamin supplementation, particularly mineral supplementation, given the huge increase in rate of consumption of supplements. There are already well known risks with the use of mineral supplements and these should typically only be used under medical supervision to avoid taking toxic levels. The results would appear to support the likelihood that, for some women, use of supplements can be bad for their health when taken long term.

    As an individual woman, it's hard to know what to do with these kinds of results. If you are taking mineral supplements and haven't talked with your health professionals about taking those, this article should encourage you to do that so your doctor can make sure you are not taking too much of something. Particularly copper which was associated with an astounding 18% higher risk of death.

    I doubt that many physicians would tell you to stop taking multi-vitamins or other common supplements based solely on these results but it's worth a conversation with him/her at your next appointment.
  9. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

    I'm sorry - I didn't know you had to register. I'm not registered with them. Someone on fb posted the title of the article, and it didn't give any info, so I googled the title and got that. Weird.

  10. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Moderation in everything...

    I use the prescribed prenatal vitamin, and try to eat healthy...
  11. keista

    keista New Member

    Thanks for posting the full article. I'm still not "buying" it. Also,
    So maybe it was the estrogen replacement therapy? Or education? Or the healthier lifestyle? LOL

    I just don't see how they are getting valid death statistics using a population that is statistically dying at that exact age. I wish they discussed the control group. Maybe I just think too much. :}
  12. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member

    I have a magnesium deficiency and it is most significant during seasonal changes. My legs hurt from the inside out and I'm completely miserable. When I take magnesium 800 mg per day, it goes away, completely.

    I think it's important to consult with your physician or a homeopath (a good one) before taking a lot of supplements. I had gone for a lot of testing before the realization was about the magnesium and even then, the doctor thought I should "take a supplement" but didn't tell me the dose.

    I think a lot of people are magnesium deficient and don't realize it, especially if their diet includes a lot of processed foods. The best bet is to eat a well balanced diet and take a daily vitamin. Ask your doctor about needed supplements or go to a really good, recommended homeopath. There are very good health food gurus out there too, but good research and recommendations are the best bet when going to them.
  13. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    I am hoping to get my mega dose of D back. Other than that....flintstones, baby! lol
  14. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member

    I do think we are going to end up getting some RX supplements eventually...just look at all the medical foods that are coming out now. I am supposed to be on one now for the brain to attempt to ward off alzheimers but insurance wont cover it so I cant afford it. I do take the RX Vitamin D still and gummy calcium chews. I also take a B complex because I think I need several of them but most importantly B2 and I couldnt find that one by itself. I get these little sores where your lips meet at the sides and I found out that is a sign of a B2 deficiency. odd huh? I used to have tubes of ointment to put on them but ran out so I have started taking the B complex to see if that helps. I am thinking of starting to take that new iron supplement that you can just pour into water so you dont get the tummy issues.
  15. keista

    keista New Member

    Interesting. I only get those when I eat fresh pineapple. Even if I am super careful not to get it in the corners, those lip corners get sores.
  16. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    The study also doesn't touch the whole subject of why people are using supplements, anyway.
    I'd be guessing that those who have "more" health issues, are more likely to use supplements than those who don't have issues. So... is it the supplements? or the other health issues? Which one better accounts for the mortality rate?
  17. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member

    True. Also where are the supplements coming from.
  18. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    It does occur to me that the "risk for death" is... 100%.
  19. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    I'm thinking maybe the "control group" didn't live long enough to make a showing.