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Tuesday, 26 February 2008

Taking a daily multivitamin and mineral supplement could reduce the risks of cancer and other age-related illnesses

Taking a daily multivitamin and mineral supplement could reduce the risks of cancer and other age-related illnesses, a scientist has claimed. Prof Bruce Ames, a biochemist and nutritional expert at the University of California, Berkeley, said excessive consumption of ready meals and fast food were to blame for increased rates of many cancers and degenerative diseases. Prof Ames suggested that faced with an inadequate supply of essential micronutrients the human body diverts them to key functions to ensure survival at the expense of long-term health.
Read article in the Daily Telegraph (UK)

Extract from the article:

"Speaking at the annual conference of the American Association for the Advancement, Prof Ames said: "A large body of evidence suggests that micronutrient inadequacy can lead to cancer and other long-term consequences.

"Significant chronic metabolic disruption may occur when consumption of a micronutrient is below the current recommended dietary allowance.

"Micronutrient inadequacies are widespread in the population, and a multivitamin-mineral (MVM) supplement in inexpensive.

"A solution is to encourage MVM supplementation, particularly in those groups with widespread deficiencies such as the poor, teenagers, the obese and the elderly, in addition to urging people to eating a more balanced diet."

Prof Ames carried out a review of previous research into the effects of inadequate levels of 40 micronutrients in the human diet.

Magnesium deficiency has been associated with bowel and other cancers, high blood pressure, osteoporosis and diabetes.

Insufficient Vitamin D in diets has been linked to colon, breast, pancreatic and prostate cancer, as well as cardiovascular disease. One study found women getting adequate vitamin D were 41 per cent less likely to get multiple sclerosis.

Another found that elderly men given potassium in table salt were 40 per cent less likely to develop cardiovascular disease than those with normal salt in their diet.

Research on laboratory mice have suggested a lack of selenium, found in nuts, cereals, meat, fish, and eggs, can cause DNA damage.

Calcium deficiency has been associated with diabetes, while a lack of Omega 3 fatty acid in diets has been linked to melanoma and other cancers."

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