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Antioxidants are often portrayed as the good forces that fight evil free radicals. Markus Lütkemeyer

Health Check: the untrue story of antioxidants vs free radicals

Antioxidants are a commonly promoted feature of health foods and supplements. They’re portrayed as the good forces that fight free radicals – nasty molecules causing damage thought to hasten ageing and…
News of a potential adverse link with prostate cancer comes at a time when the public is heeding the message that the omega-3s derived from marine sources are beneficial. Sam Catch/Flickr

Are fish oil supplements putting you at risk of prostate cancer?

A report published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute late last week shows a potential link between omega-3 fatty acids and the risk of developing prostate cancer. But it may be premature…
Just eat them, they’re good for you. PA/Ben Birchall

Taking high doses of vitamins can do more harm than good

Without vitamins in our diet we wouldn’t survive but taking too many can be harmful. There’s a limit to how much we actually need. However, since the discovery of vitamins - or “vital amines” as they were…
Most pregnant women only need to eat the equivalent of an extra two pieces of fruit and half a glass of milk a day. Flickr/flequi

Monday’s medical myth: eat for two during pregnancy

We’ve all heard people sprout the phrase, “go on, you’re eating for two now” at barbecues, dinner parties and wherever food is being served, forcing pregnant women to decline offers of more and more food…
Detox diets may do little harm, except to your bank balance, but neither do they do a lot of good. katstan

Monday’s medical myth: detox diets cleanse your body

Detox diets make amazing promises of dramatic weight loss and more energy – all achieved by flushing toxins from the body. Toxins have very little to do with it; detox diets “work” because of the very…
The best way to guard against skin cancer remains covering up - and using sun screen. Flickr/neloqua

Can Vitamin A reduce the risk of skin cancer in women?

A study that suggests vitamin A could reduce the risk of melanoma should be treated with caution, according to Australian cancer experts who say the results are inconclusive and involve potentially toxic…
The belief that supranutritional doses of vitamins will improve quality of life doesn’t match what science tells us. Happy Sleepy/Flickr

Vitamins: myths, facts, use and misuse

When it comes to using vitamins to supplement diets, there’s a wide gap between what science says and what many consumers believe. A recent study, for instance, established that some 52% of the Australian…
Healthy people without a known deficiency shouldn’t take dietary supplements. Neeta Lind

Vitamin supplements: more harm than help?

A study published yesterday in the Archives of Internal Medicine has investigated the link between taking dietary supplements and an increase risk of death in older women. Associate professor Ian Chapman…

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