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Online Wellness Community Natural Health and Anti-Aging News
Online Wellness Community Natural Health and Anti-Aging News
healthforce.com

Vitamins

Taking a daily multivitamin is generally regarded as a great nutrition insurance policy by even conservative doctors and supplement skeptics.
Many of these people also subscribe to the long held view that taking megadoses of supplements or superfood extracts has speculative benefits. Some go so far as to say save your money and focus on good fresh foods, then take a vacation with your savings. In our opinion time will prove these widely held views grossly inaccurate and ill informed. In fact we believe the day is coming where people who properly and regularly use the rapidly improving quality products such as those in our Shop will actually in most cases save money over not using “supplements” due to the decrease in typical food costs – the actual savings – by reducing the meals purchase outside the home and a decrease in the money wasted on junk food and unhealthy products that will occur as consumers nutritional knowledge increases from exposure to websites such as this one.
There is growing evidence that dosage levels, and the need for a wide variety of food sources daily, and the need to spread consumption out in2.5 to 4 hour intervals throughout the day, are all critically important to derive maximal anti-aging and disease delaying benefits from your diet and supplement regimens. This suggests that taking only one or two capsules or tablets a day, approximating 750mg to 1200mg each, is simply an insufficient dosage level to give your body the nutrient density it needs to assure optimal health and help extend your healthy years. Evidence is mounting that a combination of fresh foods, and a combination of supplements and food extracts, provides your body the best cell performance, protection and regeneration.

Trying to follow all the studies on vitamins and health can make your head swirl. But, when it’s all boiled down, the take–home message is actually pretty simple: A daily multivitamin, and maybe an extra vitamin D supplement, is a great way to make sure you’re getting all the nutrients you need to be healthy.

The reasons for most of the controversy surrounding the benefits of getting nutrients in supplement or concentrated powder form is due to a lack of understanding of the conditions and assumptions underlying the various “studies” published throughout the world.

Because there is no financial incentive (no way to recover the investment let alone make money) to spend a lot of research time and money validating the benefits of long-term use of vitamins and supplements, no one is willing to do so as is required to obtain FDA drug approval.

In fact most studies are short, involve small numbers of people, and lack the control factors needed to have the kind of reliable evidence generally required in medicine today to comfortably make any claim that the medical community will consider reliable and valid.

Nevertheless the cumulative information gathered throughout the world over literally thousands of years suggests overwhelmingly that natural supplements, natural medicine, involving all sorts of extracts, oils, and other supplements, has beneficial health effects over today’s dietary practices.

Here is an extract from Harvard’s website explaining this unfortunate reality extending the controversy over the benefits of daily supplementation with vitamins, minerals and other nutrients.

Supplements Vitamins

To consumers, keeping track of the research on vitamin supplements can be an exercise in frustration. Different studies on the same vitamins often present conflicting information. Why the contrary findings?

A closer look at the study design often reveals the cause of these discrepancies. Next time you read a news story about a vitamin trial, keep the following questions in mind, since the answers may help you put conflicting results into context:

1. What vitamin dose did study participants take—and for how long did they take it?

The most obvious source of conflicting findings is the fact that different studies test different doses of vitamins, for different lengths of time. Take vitamin D as an example. Studies have found that it protects against fractures at doses of 700 to 800 IU a day, (1) but that 400 IU a day has less benefit. (2) A short vitamin supplement trial may not show any benefit simply because it takes a long time for a disease to develop or for the vitamin’s protective effects to emerge.

2. Who were the study participants—and how healthy were their lifestyles?

Everyone knows that diet, smoking, exercise, and other lifestyle choices can have a dramatic effect on our health. These lifestyle characteristics can also have an effect on how our bodies respond to vitamins. A supplement is only useful to people whose diets are lacking in that specific nutrient; a randomized trial that gives vitamin pills to well-fed participants may not show any results. Similarly, people who smoke may have greater need for certain vitamins, so a study conducted on smokers could have different results from one conducted on people who never smoked or who have kicked the habit.

3. When did study participants take the supplement?

A supplement may only be beneficial at one stage of a disease or condition and not another, so studies done at different stages may have different results. Folate deficiency in mothers, for example, leads to neural tube defects, but folate supplements only protect against defects if taken in the first few weeks after conception.

4. How did researchers measure the supplement’s effectiveness?

Studies often differ in how they measure their outcomes—that is, how they measure whether a supplement had any benefit. Heart disease, for example, covers a wide range of conditions, including heart attack, stroke, or peripheral vascular disease. If a study measures the effect of a vitamin supplement on heart disease overall, it may miss a supplement’s protective effect against stroke.

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