Multivitamins Do Not Improve CVD Outcomes

July 10, 2018

Despite popular belief, multivitamin and/or mineral supplementation does not improve cardiovascular disease (CVD) outcomes in the general population, according to new research.1

“The use of multivitamin/mineral (MVM) dietary supplements is widespread in the United States and other developed countries,” the researchers write.


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“This is because of the popular belief that MVM supplements may help maintain and promote health by preventing various diseases, including CVD. Numerous large-scale population-based studies and randomized controlled trials have been conducted to identify the potential benefit of MVM supplementation in the general population, but the results have been equivocal.”1

To better understand the scope of literature and the CVD effects of supplementation, the researchers conducted a meta-analysis of studies published from January 1970 to August 2017, which were obtained via searching Medline, Embase, and the Cochrane Library.

Included in the analysis were 18 studies including 2,019,862 participants with 18,363,326 person-years of follow-up.

Results of the analysis showed no association between supplementation and CVD, coronary heart disease (CHD), or stroke mortality, even after adjusting for duration of supplement use, lifestyle risk factors, and demographics.

The researchers also found that supplementation was associated with a lower risk for CHD incidence, though this finding was not significant in the pooled analysis of randomized controlled trials.

“I hope our study findings help decrease the hype around multivitamin and mineral supplements and encourage people to use proven methods to reduce their risk of cardiovascular diseases—such as eating more fruits and vegetables, exercising, and avoiding tobacco,” said lead author Joonseok Kim, MD, assistant professor of cardiology in the Department of Medicine.2

—Amanda Balbi


  1. Kim J, Choi J, Kwon SY, et al. Association of multivitamin and mineral supplementation and risk of cardiovascular disease. Circulation. 2018;11(7):e004224.
  2. Study: Multivitamins do not prevent strokes, heart attacks or cardiovascular disease ... [press release]. Birmingham, Alabama: The University of Alabama at Birmingham; July 10, 2018. Accessed July 10, 2018.



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