To take or not to take? Solving the vitamin dilemma

There are multi-vitamins, vitamins for men, vitamins for women, vitamins advertised for “brain power, energy, bone health and for the 50-somethings.”

 

Vitamins and supplements are a $20 billion dollar a year industry. If you don’t believe me just walk down the vitamin aisle! There are multi-vitamins, vitamins for men, vitamins for women, vitamins advertised for “brain power, energy, bone health and for the 50-somethings.”

Research shows that about half of us take vitamin, something we wouldn’t need at all if we ate a well balanced diet. But who does that!

In general, large studies have failed to prove that supplements can prevent disease or help us live longer, healthier lives. In fact, if you take too many supplements they can cause serious problems.

Allison Tucker, M.D., a physician with Norton Community Medical Associates – Middletown , told me that a good multi-vitamin is fine for most of us. Dr. Tucker, who was long ago my daughters’ middle school science teacher, says we should look for a multi-vitamin that will dissolve in a glass of water in roughly five minutes. If it takes longer than that, it just washes out of our body.

She also says when we are over the age of 50, we should get a multi-vitamin that has ocuvite in it. Ocuvite promotes eye health. Whatever you do, she recommends that at least once a year you go over all your medications and supplements with your doctor to make sure you are taking the right thing. Some vitamins or supplements taken in conjunction with certain medications can have negative side effects.

For more information I found nutrition.gov to be an excellent internet resource.



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