The antioxidant myth: a medical fairy tale


An article from last August’s New Scientist on all these supplements people (ME) take.  Are we just throwing money away?  Or worse yet are we actually doing harm instead of helping our bodies?  I really don’t know but this article might shed some light on it. 

 “Cranberry capsules. Green tea extract. Effervescent vitamin C. Pomegranate concentrate. Beta carotene. Selenium. Grape seed extract. High-dose vitamin E. Pine bark extract. Bee spit.

You name it, if it’s an antioxidant, we’ll swallow it by the bucket-load. According to some estimates around half the adults in the US take antioxidant pills daily in the belief they promote good health and stave off disease. We have become antioxidant devotees. But are they doing us any good? Evidence gathered over the past few years shows that at best, antioxidant supplements do little or nothing to benefit our health. At worst, they may even have the opposite effect, promoting the very problems they are supposed to stamp out.”


Also of possible interest, “The Great Cholesterol Lie

~ by searching4alpha on February 6, 2007.

2 Responses to “The antioxidant myth: a medical fairy tale”

  1. Yes, throwing your money away. Yes, medical fairy tale. Go eat some veggies, people! 😛

  2. Like everything else in nutrition, balance seems to be sine quo non of good health. Too few antioxidants will cause oxidative damage, whereas too many will turn the anti-oxidants to pro-oxidants.

    There always has to be those people who take it too far and megadose on a specific health claim, case in point, anti-oxidants.

    It’s a shame that in our country, the “more is better” attitude has seeped into our dietary habits. Perhaps that’s why we’ve become so fat.

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