Response to antioxidant review

The recent updated meta-analysis published in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews can be considered a flawed study for the following reasons:

  • The authors selectivly picked 67 out of 648 vitamin studies which had known medical conditions, used high doses of vitamins and had subjects which had died.
  • No elimination of deaths by other causes such as medical conditions, accident, suicide or homicide were considered.
  • There were too many variables such as different anti- oxidants,(some not even anti – oxidants), different doses, different populations with different health statuses, and for different durations.

There was also biased and inaccurate media reporting.

The conclusion is that:

  • Healthy consumers can continue to take supplements in recommended doses.
  • Consumers with serious illnesses such as cancer, heart disease or liver disease should consult their doctor before taking any supplements
  • Beta – carotene supplements , as is already known are best not taken singly by smokers.
  • Vitamin E in high doses , should not be taken by those on cholesterol lowering medication, however Selenium and Vit C are the most likely to be beneficial.