Many pros of multivitamins outweigh cons
Every week a new article comes out either recommending or condemning the use of multivitamins. The conflicting information can make it difficult for patients and clinicians alike to make an informed decision on multivitamin use.
A multivitamin is a dietary supplement that contains three or more vitamins and/or minerals. Approximately 30 percent of the U.S. population uses dietary supplements, most of which are multivitamins.
Multivitamins are considered to be very safe. Keep in mind, however, that vitamins can interact with certain medications, either enhancing or diminishing their effect. If you take medications, it is a good idea to contact your prescribing doctor before choosing to take any supplements, including a multivitamin.
Research on multivitamin use has shown that it has several therapeutic benefits. Studies have revealed that vitamins can reduce bad cholesterol, decrease blood pressure, and ease anxiety and stress. It can also reduce the risk of heart attack and, in some cases, prevent certain types of cancer.
It is important to understand that the Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) printed on the back of a multivitamin bottle is the dosage amount required to prevent disease. This is nowhere near the amount of the vitamin you should take for optimum, therapeutic benefit. If you are considering taking supplements for a specific condition, it is a good idea to talk with a knowledgeable professional first. Naturopathic doctors, chiropractors and some medical doctors are educated in the therapeutic use of vitamins and supplements.
Multivitamins should never take the place of a healthy diet. It is best to obtain vitamins and other micronutrients from food. Unfortunately, most of the foods at the market are highly processed and chemically altered. Even fruits and vegetables have pesticides that can deplete the body's nutrients, making them less healthy. Taking a multivitamin can replace the nutrition lost.
So, should you be taking a multivitamin? I say yes. The pros outweigh the cons, and at such a low cost (usually less than a dollar a day), it's good insurance.
If you would like more information, feel free to call 304-757-7246 or stop by the office. Consultations are always free. You can also email me at Lmerritt@doctormerrittchiro.com
Dr. Levi G. Merritt recently opened Merritt Chiropractic at 100 Erskine Lane in Scott Depot. He will write about health and fitness matters for The Putnam Herald. He can be reached at 304-757-7246 or Lmerritt@doctormerrittchiro.com.
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