About a year ago, ABC news aired a news segment stating that vitamins are not good for your health.  They cited a study that concluded that vitamins cause earlier deaths.  Supplement sales dropped and people began to call me, concerned that what they were taking might hurt them. However, Dr. Katz of Yale’s research prevention center later stated that the study ABC news had mentioned was merely observational and could not prove cause or effect.

How Much is Too Much?

The majority of supplemental vitamins are water-soluble.  This means the excess is essentially flushed out of your system via your urine.  Hence, the “yellow pee” you see about an hour after you take your multivitamin.  However, there are several fat soluble vitamins that aren’t flushed out through your urine.  These include:

  • Vitamins D
  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin K

You can get an excess of these fat soluble vitamins because they are stored in your fatty tissues and your liver.  However, the majority of people are deficient in D and possibly even E and A, so it rarely becomes a problem.  If you bruise easy, then you may be deficient in vitamin K, as well.

Vitamin D is made from sun exposure.  Most people are scared of the sun and slather down with sunscreen inhibiting their D exposure.  Also, if you live in a northern climate, it makes it extremely difficult to get enough vitamin D.

Most people don’t get enough other fat soluble vitamins either.  The foods that contain the highest amounts of these vitamins are colorful vegetables.  The average diet is pretty void of colorful fresh veggies.

This is why I complete DISAGREE that vitamins are dangerous and unnecessary!  Although, I do believe that the brand and kind of vitamin is extremely important. Vitamin companies try their best to provide a “one size fits all” pill, but the reality is that every body is different.

Getting the Perfect Vitamin for You

If you really want to get technical and specific, then you can have lab work performed to see what vitamins you are actually low in.  I really like Spectracell Laboratories.  They do a micronutrient testing that is covered by many insurance companies.  To look for a clinician in your area that does the testing go here: http://www.spectracell.com/find-a-clinician/

This way you can ONLY supplement those vitamins, minerals and antioxidants you are deficient in.

I also highly recommend hair mineral analysis. Many

times, an imbalance in minerals can cause health issues. I have used hair mineral analysis for myself and use it for my clients.  It’s very inexpensive and gives accurate results for the minerals (both toxic and necessary) in your body.  Analytical Research Labs and Trace Elements are two very reputable companies for hair analysis.  They provide easy to read results and interpret your results for you, as well.  Go to their contact link on their website and contact them to get connected with a practitioner in your area.

Not All Vitamins are Equal

Not all vitamins are equal.  Supplements are a non-regulated industry, which means if you buy from a non-reputable vitamin company, you may not be getting what is on the label!

Companies that sell their vitamins dirt-cheap at “big box” stores need to be avoided.  Many of them buy their raw materials from China and do not have them tested for purity.

Home Cures That Work has researched various supplements to test for quality, labelled amounts and digestibility.

Going to your local health food store is usually a safe option.  Most health food stores ONLY buy from reputable companies that test their supplements.  Consult with a salesperson for their recommended supplements. Many times they have sampled various supplements and have had training on the manufacturing processes of different companies vitamins.

There are a couple of standards that you want to have when you are shopping for a vitamin or supplement:

  • Buy only “whole food” vitamins
  • Choose a vitamin that is gender appropriate because men and women need different nutrients
  • Look for age appropriate vitamins (Seniors require different nutrient ratios)

My absolute favorite company is New Chapter.  They have a patented process in which they actually turn the vitamin into food!  You can take New Chapter products on an empty stomach and it won’t make you nauseous.  If someone tells me they have a hard time digesting or tolerating vitamins, I always tell them to try New Chapter.

Safety Lies in the Dosage

Vitamins are always safest if taken as directed on the label.  More is not always better.  Most vitamin companies do a lot of research to figure out the correct ratios that would benefit most people.  Of course, eating well is better than taking a multivitamin. However, most people don’t eat a balanced diet, especially when it comes to the vitamin rich fruits and vegetables.

All in all, I believe a good multivitamin can benefit most people when taken as directed.  I take one and I can tell when I’ve forgotten it!

Do you take a multivitamin?  Why or Why not?

And if you do, what brand do you take?

Comment below.  I’d love to hear from you!


Recommended Further Reading: