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Vitamin E Loses Luster: Nutrient tests show disappointing results

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11:01am, March 16, 2005

Is that the sound of gelcaps plunking into trash cans? It could be, after publication of a new study reporting that vitamin E supplements fail to promote overall health in older people at risk for heart problems and might even hike their chances of developing heart failure.

That's not the only recent count against vitamin E, an oily substance usually dispensed in clear capsules. Earlier this year, researchers at Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions in Baltimore reported finding a pattern in past studies of elderly people with health problems: Those taking vitamin E supplements had a slightly higher death rate than did participants getting a placebo, the scientists said in the Jan. 4 Annals of Internal Medicine.

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