Millions of people are taking vitamin supplements every day to keep off diseases and slow down the aging process. New researches indicate that taking these supplements may be putting people at risk of death.

It was a team from Copenhagen University Hospital that reviewed the published evidence on beta carotene, vitamin A, vitamin E, Vitamin C and selenium which had been taken as preventive against like cancer and heart disease. The vitamins were taken to eliminating the free radicals.

The researchers determined that the supplements may be causing "oxidative stress" and damaging and killing off cells.

The researchers went through clinical trials that involved groups of people taking vitamins, single or in combinations with other vitamins, and then compared them to similar groups taking a placebo or not taking anything.
The results were surprising. It has been found that vitamin A increased mortality risk by 16 %, vitamin E by 4%, beta carotene 7% while selenium and vitamin C had no increased risk.

The researchers explained the potential reasons for these results. It could be that the free radicals thought to cause the oxidative stress are actually the byproduct and not cause of disease. They may play an important role in the immune system and eliminating them could be counterproductive.
The research only included vitamin supplements and did not apply to antioxidants found naturally in fruits, vegetables and other foods.