(The researchers included supplements that contained more than 3 vitamins or minerals.) Together these studies involved more than 2 million people from five countries (the United States, Japan, France, Sweden and Germany); and participants were followed for an average of 12 years.
The use of multivitamin and mineral supplements is widespread in the United States.
This means that the market, especially online, is flooded with "fake" medications and supplements.
"One of the big problems with multivitamin use is that it could deviate the public from following the measures that are proven to be beneficial for cardiovascular health, including eating fruits and vegetables, and doing more exercise", said study lead author Joonseok Kim, a researcher at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, according to the American Heart Association.
They said the small number of studies that had established a link between multivitamin and mineral supplementation and a lower risk of coronary heart disease could be explained by the fact that people who take such supplements tend to have a healthier diet.
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Researchers found no association between taking multivitamin and mineral supplements and a lower risk of death from cardiovascular diseases.
Taking vitamins and minerals was tied to lower risk of coronary heart disease (RR 0.88, 95% CI 0.79 to 0.97), though randomized data alone did not support this.
"Simply put, multivitamins and mineral supplements do not improve cardiovascular health outcomes, so [they] should not be taken for that goal", added Kim.
It is "logical" to expect certain vitamins to reduce cardiovascular events, given their anti-inflammatory effects, Alyson Haslam, PhD, and Vinay Prasad, MD, MPH, both of Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, noted in an accompanying editorial.
In response, the Council on Responsible Nutrition, a supplement trade group, said, "multivitamins fill nutrient gaps in our less-than-perfect diets" and "are not meant to serve as magic bullets".
"The evidence-based, guideline-recommended approaches to reduce the risk of fatal and non-fatal cardiovascular disease include maintaining a healthy blood pressure, cholesterol levels, body weight, not smoking, and engaging in daily physical activity", Fonarow added.