Multi Woes, Awesome Science and Lessons from Abroad

Multivitamins may not be so multi-talented, digital imaging has muscle and Brazil shows us how it’s done.

To Multi or Not to Multi?
That is the question. And new research says “not.” Somewhere the Centrum marketing team is freaking out.

According to the Archives of Internal Medicine, a daily multivitamin may not keep cancer or heart disease at bay. While the 161,808 women who were part of the pill-poppin’ study didn’t have an decreased risk of some chronic diseases, the supplements certainly didn’t hurt, especially for those with limited diets. And note that the study just looked at general multivitamins and didn’t include prenatal vitamins or other supplements like calcium and vitamin D. So you moms-to-be or those who have been ordered to take a multi by your doctor, keep at it.

Another reason to keep eating your veggies.

Muscle Moves
Sometimes technology just amazes me. Like jaw-on-the-floor amazes me. Like, I-can-really-point-an-iPhone-at-a-any-speaker-and-it’ll-tell-me-the-artist-and-title-of-a-song amazes me. A-maz-ing. And here’s another example: Dutch researchers have created a new digital imaging system that allows them to see the body in real time, along with—and this is the coolest part—highlighting muscle movement.

Get this: “the system uses infrared strobe lights and eight cameras to track muscle movement in patients while they wear reflective suits during exercise.” How much fun would that be?! I can really only imagine Beyoncé all geared up dancing her “Single Ladies” dance while the researchers try to track that action. Ka-pow!

Besides doing that, the new technology can help with stroke recovery and muscle rehabilitation, which deserves an even bigger KA-POW!

Technology is so darn cool.

Brazil Knows What’s Up
If America really wants to get healthier, a new study says that we need to take a closer look at our South American neighbors. A Brazilian health-promotion program recently showed crazy good results, and researchers say that it may just be a matter of moving the program to the U.S. for us to see the same.

The program was held in Recife, Brazil, (fun trivia: Recife is the fifth largest city in Brazil) and consisted of 21 public spaces that were used for free calisthenic and dance classes, walking groups and nutrition classes, each day from 5 a.m. to 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. While researchers say the initiative can work in the US of A, it’s probably only possible in sunny, warm cities where you canexercise outside year round.

If only I lived in a warmer city.

Will you still take a multivitamin? Interested in this new type of digital imagining? Wish you lived in Brazil? Let us know in the comments! —Jenn

Want more fun fitness news that you can use? Check out how you can work out with Jillian for free and how you can reduce your stress levels.

Photos grabbed from shouldbecleaning,~ggvic~ and Henrique Vicente on Flickr.

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  1. Irene says:

    Multi-Vitamins don’t hurt so why not continue to take them. So many people don’t eat right and the supplements can provide us with that little boost in Vitamin D, or Iron, or Calcium we need for the day. I never expected it to cure me of any diseases.

  2. kjl says:

    I have to say I’m kind of glad about the multi-vitamin research, only because I constantly forget to take my vitamins!

  3. tfh says:

    It would be so fun to duplicate that Brazilian program elsewhere! I love the idea of having a whole community committed to fitness. (Especially in a sunny, warm climate.)

    As for vitamins, I’ll keep taking mine– I do think of them as insurance, esp. when it comes to things that we women tend to lack/need more of like iron, calcium, and folate.

  4. Sagan says:

    Go Brazil! Technology is so cool sometimes. And all the conflicting research about medication really puts me off of it… hence why I don’t even take a multivitamin. I likes me my greens and real food 🙂

  5. Elizabeth says:

    Brazil has actually been doing a lot of these types of programs because it has an extremely high rate of obesity… check out this exhibition from the National Library of Medicine to learn more!


  6. David at Animal-Kingdom-Workouts says:

    I’m constantly amazed by technology too. The muscle imaging thing you mention is cool, but it still doesn’t beat the iPhone app!

    – Dave

  7. Tish says:

    fbg’s could just move to cali : )

    as for the vitamins…just expensive pee. that’s my motto.

  8. melania says:

    Oh, Brazil. Home of beautiful people and now home of good ways to get people moving? I love it. I wish we could replicate this in some part in every major US city. For cities with snow on the ground – what about a mini-spin class or rock wall climbing?

    My mother would be proud as I have finally caught on to taking a multi everyday. While I may not be keeping myself immortal, I know from experience that it’s helped me ward off colds and other gross sickness. Plus, like others have said, it’s good insurance for days when all of the vitamins and minerals you want to take aren’t within reach.