We’ve been told for years that taking a multivitamin every day is essential for good health. They are touted for giving you energy, lowering blood pressure, fighting cancer, and living a longer, healthier and happier life. It seems there are vitamins for every age, sex, body type, health level, and lifestyle. But now many scientists are saying that vitamins may not only be unnecessary, they may even be dangerous.
One of the biggest issues with multivitamins and other supplements is that there’s no federal regulation for their ingredients. The FDA is responsible for regulating what goes into everything you eat and every medicine you take. They take precautions to try to protect you and keep you safe. But, there are no agencies responsible for regulating what goes into the supplements you take. No one is responsible for double checking the purity or safety of the ingredients. Many supplements and vitamins can be dangerous if they are made improperly or with impure ingredients.
The FDA also requires drug companies to report the side effects of their medication. With multivitamins and supplements, there’s no such requirement. This means you’ll have to research everything in the pill that you aren’t sure is safe. Plus, researching side effects of multivitamins and herbal medications on the internet, where most people do their searching, may or may not give you accurate information.
There are organizations out there that will verify and give supplements “stamps of approval”, but these are all voluntary. Also, with the many organizations that will do this, you have to know what approvals to trust. Just because it has a “guaranteed pure” or certification seal on it does not mean it’s safe for you and your family.
When you buy a pack of multivitamins, turn it around and look at the back. Many multivitamins have not only the vitamins you need, but a lot of extra you don’t. While 600% of your recommended daily value may seem to be better than 100%, that extra really doesn’t do much good. In fact, it may even be hurting you.
Even drinking too much water can be hazardous to your health; think of what too much of a vitamin or mineral might do. Most of the extra is simply eliminated from the body in your urine. That’s not just wasting your money, it’s making extra work for your kidneys and other parts of your body. Even if you take a multivitamin that only has 100% of the nutrients you need (which are often hard to find), your overall vitamin intake for the day, including the vitamins in the food you eat, may exceed 100%.
So, if you’re not taking a multivitamin, how can you get enough of the nutrients you need? From your food, of course. The best way to get what you need is the natural way. Eating a diet rich in fresh fruits, vegetables, and omega 3 fatty acids (the best way to get these is from fish) will provide pretty much all the nutrition you need to live a healthy life. In fact, nutrients from food are better absorbed into the body and do you more good.