Men who take high doses of vitamin supplements could be increasing their risk of lethal prostate cancer by nearly 30 per cent, say researchers.
A study of 48,000 men spanning more than two decades suggests popping too many vitamin pills can put them in danger of tumours that are more likely to be fatal.
The researchers linked high doses of vitamin C to an increased risk of lethal and advanced prostate cancer.
The results, by experts from Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, in the US, and the University of Oslo in Norway, are not the first to raise the alarm over the dangers of excess vitamin consumption.
Nearly a quarter of adults in the UK are estimated to take antioxidant supplements or multivitamins regularly in the hope that it will help protect them against illnesses such as heart disease and cancer. The market for such products is worth around half a billion pounds a year. In recent years, high-dose vitamins have become popular, with people taking more in the belief that it is better for them.
For example, health food shops now sell vitamin C tablets in doses of 1,000mg each, but the body needs only about 40mg a day to keep cells healthy and promote healing. In the latest research, the scientists set out to see if antioxidants in vitamin pills and food could reduce the chances of a prostate tumour. From 1986 to 2008 they followed 48,000 men aged between 40 and 75. Every four years, the men completed food questionnaires designed to record their dietary habits.
Source - Daily Mail