When it comes to the effectiveness of over-the-counter vitamins and supplements, they are certainly not all created equal. “A study published today in The New England Journal of Medicine found that adverse effects of supplements were responsible for an average of about 23,000 emergency department (ER) visits per year. That’s a lot for something that’s supposed to be good for you.” says Susan Farrell, MD. “While the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is responsible for overseeing dietary supplements, no safety testing or FDA approval is required before a new supplement is brought to market. There is no requirement that the packaging of dietary supplements list potential adverse effects, nor are there any standards for maximum pill size (an obvious risk for the elderly).” Here are five vitamins that doctors say are unnecessary, even dangerous. Read on and to ensure your health and the health of others, don’t miss these Sure signs you’ve already had COVID.
Say it’s not – research shows that multivitamins are far less effective than healthy eating and essentially useless. “We were surprised to find so few positive effects from the most common supplements people consume,” says Dr. David Jenkinsmain author of a study investigate the effectiveness of popular vitamins and supplements. “Our review found that if you want to use multivitamins, vitamin D, calcium, or vitamin C, it does no harm, but there is no apparent benefit either. In the absence of data significant positives, aside from the potential reduction in risk of folic acid, stroke and heart disease: it’s best to rely on a healthy diet to top up on vitamins and minerals. , no research on supplements has shown us anything better than healthy servings of less processed plant foods, including vegetables, fruits, and nuts.”
Want to buy some fancy detox supplements? Do not bother. Your liver and kidneys are more than capable of filtering out anything toxic in your blood, and if you really want to help your liver, eat a healthy diet and reduce your alcohol intake. “The whole attraction of this detox market, of these teas, these juices, these cures, is this desire for magical thinking”, says toxicologist Ryan Marino, MD. “People want something that will solve a problem, and if you can buy it online, take a pill every day, there’s definitely some kind of element of wanting to believe it’s going to be a magic cure. The only thing you need to detox your body naturally, and I hate to even say this because I don’t think anyone really needs to detox, it’s just your liver and kidneys. And if those aren’t working, you should see a doctor anyway.
Taking Too Much Vitamin D Isn’t Just Useless (Benefits Stop at a Certain Point) but can even be dangerous. “Healthy people have taken these pills, but they should not continue taking vitamin D supplements without control,” says Muhammad Amer, MD, MHS, assistant professor in the division of general internal medicine at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “At some point, more vitamin D no longer confers any survival benefit, so taking these expensive supplements is a waste of money at best.”
“Taking 60,000 international units (IU) daily of vitamin D for several months has been shown to cause toxicity,” says Katherine Zeratsky, RD, LD “This level is several times higher than the US Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for most adults of 600 IU of vitamin D per day.”
Studies have shown that contrary to popular belief, omega-3 supplements do not prevent disease and are essentially a waste of your hard earned cash. “I have a lot of patients who are like, ‘I’m going to take my supplement and I won’t worry about eating healthy during the day,'” says Dr Pieter Cohen, Cambridge Health Alliance, Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. “It’s really misguided. Because in this case, we have absolutely no evidence that it’s better to replace a healthy fish meal with an omega-3 supplement.”
Vitamin C is another supplement that is best taken with food rather than a pill. “Too much vitamin C can turn the famous antioxidant into a pro-oxidant (which damages cells in the body), not to mention diarrhea,” says Bethany Thayer, MS, RDN.
Ferozan Mast is a science, health and wellness writer passionate about making science and research-based information accessible to the general public. Read more