A Multivitamin a Day Keeps The Doctor Away

Armen Hareyan's picture

(NC) - While it may not be surprising that good overall nutrition can lessen the burden on the healthcare system by reducing the risk of chronic disease, recent evidence suggests that a daily multivitamin can do so as well.

According to a recent U.S. study conducted by The Lewin Group, the daily use of a multivitamin by older adults could lead to more than $1.6 billion in Medicare savings in the next 5 years.

For example, a study in The Lancet Journal shows that 70% of Neural Tube Defects (NTDs) could be prevented if all high-risk women of childbearing years consumed the daily recommended intake of folate. Since folate is difficult to get from diet alone, women are often encouraged by their dietitian or family doctor to take a multivitamin that contains at least 0.4 mg of folic acid. The Lewin Group study suggests that if 17% more women of childbearing age did this, approximately 600 babies would be born without NTDs, which would translate into over $300 million US savings per year.

The study also concludes that improved nutritional status, which includes meeting daily vitamin and mineral requirements, could result in healthcare cost savings from a reduction in hospitalizations for heart attacks or nursing home stays and home health care due to infections.

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"More importantly, a daily multivitamin may reduce the risk of various chronic diseases and ensure your body is consistently getting all the nutrients it needs," says Samara Felesky-Hunt, registered dietitian and nutritional educator in Calgary.

More research is needed to explore the potential savings if other chronic diseases and cancers could be reduced. However, many healthcare professionals agree that a well balanced, trusted multivitamin supplement is a safe and simple way to promote good health. To learn more about healthy living and good nutrition, visit www.centrumvitamins.ca


- News Canada