Woman taking vitamins

More minerals could save lives

Could taking vitamins be key in helping postmenopausal women survive breast cancer?

Another reason to take your vitamins — they could help you beat breast cancer.

In an observational study, researchers found that postmenopausal patients who regularly took multivitamins with minerals had a 30 percent lower rate of death than those who didn't take advantage of supplements. The Women's Health Initiative Clinical Trials and the Women's Health Initiative Observational Study found the results.

The most recent results were based on more than 7,700 women involved in a larger study of 161,608 participants. It was focused on women who started taking vitamins after their diagnosis.

"We don't know the full effect," said Sylvia Wassertheil-Smoller, lead author of the study and professor emerita at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University. "We only had 321 that started taking the vitamins after the diagnosis. So, we don't have the data basis to change the treatment [recommendations]."

"It's clear we need a lot more studying on this,” said Wassertheil-Smoller. "There are a lot of unknowns about this, and there should be a lot more research on it in the mainstream."

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