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Essential vitamin alternatives

Essential vitamin alternatives

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: Essential vitamin alternatives

Helpful Links They are not essential to life, but they do have a positive effect on health. In the case of iron, having too much can be as dangerous as having too little. Many people choose to take supplements but taking too much or taking them for too long could be harmful. High-dose vitamin E supplements have been linked to higher rates of early death mortality. Which migraine medications are most helpful? Keep in mind, it is never too late or too early to eat healthy.
What Vitamins and Supplements Should You Take? A Simple Guide People who have had gastric surgery or deal with digestion issues can benefit from liquid vitamins as well. Many of these resources are available in versions written for consumers in both English and Spanish and also for health professionals. By Kelsey Kunik, RDN. Last Updated: June 6, Zinc: Everything You Need to Know Zinc is a nutrient that plays many vital roles in your body. Iodine is especially important for babies and pregnant women, because this mineral is crucial to bone and brain formation.
The best foods for vitamins and minerals

Find out about salt in your diet. Page last reviewed: 9 October Next review due: 9 October Home Common health questions Food and diet Back to Food and diet. Do I need vitamin supplements? Folic acid supplement in pregnancy If you're pregnant, trying for a baby or could get pregnant, it's recommended that you take a microgram folic acid supplement every day until you're 12 weeks pregnant.

Vitamin D supplement From around late March or early April until the end of September, most people can get all the vitamin D they need through sunlight on their skin and from eating a balanced diet. It is recommended that: breastfed babies should be given a daily supplement containing 8.

Supplements containing vitamins A, C and D Children aged 6 months to 5 years should take vitamin supplements containing vitamins A, C and D every day. Fizzy effervescent tablets: salt advice Effervescent vitamin supplements or effervescent painkillers can contain up to 1g of salt per tablet.

Further information About vitamins and minerals Vitamins, supplements and nutrition in pregnancy Eating a balanced diet European Food Information Council: vitamins and minerals Healthy Start: getting vitamins Page last reviewed: 9 October Next review due: 9 October Vitamin A: beef, liver, eggs, shrimp, fish, fortified milk, sweet potatoes, carrots, pumpkins, spinach, mangoes.

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What is a tongue-tie? What parents need to know. Which migraine medications are most helpful? How well do you score on brain health? Shining light on night blindness.

Can watching sports be bad for your health? About vitamin supplements Vitamins and minerals are obtained from food Vitamin and mineral deficiencies Vitamin pills are not miracle cures Vitamin use and cancer claims Vitamin and mineral supplements can be dangerous Vitamin and mineral supplements are a short-term measure Seek professional advice when taking vitamin and mineral supplements Where to get help.

About vitamin supplements Vitamins are organic compounds that our bodies use, in very small amounts, for a variety of metabolic processes. Vitamins and minerals are obtained from food Research indicates that most of the vitamins you get from the food you eat are better than those contained in pills.

Vitamin and mineral deficiencies Our body only needs a small amount of vitamins and minerals every day External Link. However, some people may need supplements to correct vitamin or mineral deficiencies and this includes: pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding people who smoke , drink alcohol in excess or use illegal drugs crash dieters or those on very strict diets the elderly especially those who are disabled or chronically ill some vegetarians or vegans women with heavy periods people with food allergies those with malabsorption problems such as diarrhoea , coeliac disease , cystic fibrosis or pancreatitis.

Folate and pregnancy Women who are pregnant or planning a pregnancy are recommended folic acid also known as folate supplements to reduce their risk of having a child with a neural tube defect , such as spina bifida.

Vegan diets and vitamin supplements People who follow vegan diets , especially if pregnant, may benefit from vitamin B12 supplements. Vitamin pills are not miracle cures It is commonly believed that taking mega-doses of certain vitamins will act like medicine to cure or prevent certain ailments.

Stress, tiredness and vitamin pills Vitamin supplements are commonly considered to be an antidote to stress. Anti-ageing vitamins Vitamin E is often singled out as the potential fountain of youth.

Vitamin use and cancer claims Some claims have been made that certain vitamins can treat different cancers. For example: Vitamin A beta-carotene in large doses does not cure cancer and can be toxic, particularly if taken as pills rather than food.

Studies have linked vitamin A to an increase in other cancers — such as lung cancer in smokers, if taken in supplement form. Although there is some evidence vitamin E could play a small role in preventing some cancers, equally there is evidence that it could speed up the onset of other types of cancer.

However, this has not been proved or disproved. High doses of antioxidants are unlikely to help with the effectiveness of conventional cancer treatments such as chemotherapy and radiotherapy. In fact, megadoses of antioxidants can interfere with some medical treatments for cancer by helping to protect the cancer cells that the therapies aim to destroy.

Some studies have shown prostate , breast and lung cancer risk are not decreased by taking high-dose supplements containing vitamins E or C or selenium.

Vitamin and mineral supplements can be dangerous Proper balance and adequate levels of essential nutrients is important for a range of complex processes in our body. High doses of vitamin supplements are unsafe Many people mistakenly believe that since small amounts of vitamins are good for you, then large amounts must be better.

Taking higher than recommended doses of some vitamins may cause health problems. Such as: Vitamins A, D, E and K are fat soluble, which means they are stored in the body and if taken in high doses can be toxic.

High doses of some water-soluble vitamins, such as vitamin B6, can also become toxic. Large folate intakes can hide vitamin B12 deficiencies. High levels of vitamin B6 have also been linked to some types of nerve damage. Doses of vitamin C above one gram can cause diarrhoea.

Excessive amounts of vitamin C in the body can also interfere with medical tests — such as diabetes tests, by giving a false result. High doses of vitamin A may cause birth defects, as well as central nervous system, liver, bone and skin disorders.

High-dose vitamin E supplements have been linked to higher rates of early death mortality. Large doses of minerals can also lead to health problems Excessive doses of some minerals may also cause problems for example: At just 5 times the RDI, zinc, iron, chromium and selenium can be raised to toxic levels in the body.

Large intakes of fluoride especially in childhood may stain, and even weaken, the teeth. Very large doses of fish oil can lead to decreased blood clotting.

Iron toxicity is also common. Even a small amount over the RDI can cause gastrointestinal upset, nausea and black bowel actions poo.

Severe toxicity can lead to coma and even death. Stay safe and keep to the recommended dose For a healthy adult, if supplements are used, they should generally be taken at levels close to the RDI.

Vitamin and mineral supplements are a short-term measure Taking vitamin and mineral supplements is a short-term measure. Seek professional advice when taking vitamin and mineral supplements Some complementary medicines , such as vitamin and mineral supplements can interact with prescription medicines and medical treatments.

Where to get help Your GP doctor Dietitians Australia External Link Tel. Nutrient Reference Values for Australia and New Zealand External Link , National Health and Medical Research Council, Australian Government.

Essential vitamin alternatives

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Supplements and Safety (full documentary) - Hidden Dangers of Vitamins \u0026 Supplements - FRONTLINE

Essential vitamin alternatives -

The water-soluble vitamins are the eight B vitamins B-1, B-2, B-3, B-5, B-6, B-7, B-9, and B and vitamin C. The fat-soluble vitamins are A, D, E, and K.

There are many minerals, but certain ones are necessary for optimal health. Minerals are split into two groups: major and trace. Major ones are not necessarily more important than trace, but it means there are greater amounts in your body.

Federal guidelines suggest minimum daily amounts for vitamins and key minerals. However, unless you need to increase your intake for specific ones because of a deficiency or other medical reason, following so many numbers can be confusing.

The best approach to ensure you get a variety of vitamins and minerals, and in the proper amounts, is to adopt a broad healthy diet. This involves an emphasis on fruits and vegetables, whole grains, beans and legumes, low-fat protein, and dairy products.

The good news is that many common foods contain multiple mineral and vitamin sources, so it is easy to meet your daily needs from everyday meals. Here are some of the best foods for vitamins and minerals from the Harvard Medical School Special Heath Report, Making Sense of Vitamins and Minerals: Choosing the foods and nutrients you need to stay healthy :.

B Fortified grains and cereals, asparagus, spinach, broccoli, legumes black-eyed peas and chickpeas , orange juice. Vitamin C: Citrus fruit, potatoes, broccoli, bell peppers, spinach, strawberries, tomatoes, Brussels sprouts. Vitamin A: beef, liver, eggs, shrimp, fish, fortified milk, sweet potatoes, carrots, pumpkins, spinach, mangoes.

As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.

Thanks for visiting. Don't miss your FREE gift. The Best Diets for Cognitive Fitness , is yours absolutely FREE when you sign up to receive Health Alerts from Harvard Medical School. Sign up to get tips for living a healthy lifestyle, with ways to fight inflammation and improve cognitive health , plus the latest advances in preventative medicine, diet and exercise , pain relief, blood pressure and cholesterol management, and more.

Research indicates that most of the vitamins you get from the food you eat are better than those contained in pills. The main exception to this is folate. The synthetic form in a supplement or fortified food is better absorbed by the body than folate from food sources.

Food is a complex source of vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals plant chemicals , which all work together.

Supplements tend to work in isolation. Research shows a food component that has an effect on the body may not have the same effect when it is isolated and taken as a supplement.

Phytochemicals are an important component of food and are thought to reduce the incidence of heart disease and some cancers.

Supplements do not provide the benefits of phytochemicals and other components found in food. Taking vitamin and mineral supplements is no substitute for a healthy diet. Our body only needs a small amount of vitamins and minerals every day External Link.

A varied diet generally provides enough of each vitamin and mineral. However, some people may need supplements to correct vitamin or mineral deficiencies and this includes:. Women who are pregnant or planning a pregnancy are recommended folic acid also known as folate supplements to reduce their risk of having a child with a neural tube defect , such as spina bifida.

Folic acid is a B-group vitamin which can also be found in some fortified foods such as breads and breakfast cereals.

Foods fortified with folic acid have the nutrient added to them during production to boost their nutritional value. People who follow vegan diets , especially if pregnant, may benefit from vitamin B12 supplements.

It is commonly believed that taking mega-doses of certain vitamins will act like medicine to cure or prevent certain ailments. For instance, vitamin C is suggested as a cure for the common cold, and vitamin E is widely promoted as a beneficial antioxidant to help prevent heart disease.

After extensive research, however, neither of these claims has been shown to be true. Large-scale studies have consistently shown little benefit in taking mega-doses of supplements. In fact, there is some evidence that taking high-dose supplements to prevent or cure major chronic diseases such as heart disease and cancer , may be harmful to your health.

Vitamin supplements are commonly considered to be an antidote to stress. Popping a pill will not likely cure persistent tiredness either.

If you are feeling run down, it is more likely to be due to stress, depression , insufficient sleep or other factors, rather than a vitamin deficiency. If you feel like this regularly, seek medical advice.

Vitamin E is often singled out as the potential fountain of youth. However, there is no evidence that taking large doses of any vitamin can stall or reverse the effects of ageing. Neither can one vitamin restore a flagging sex drive or cure infertility.

Some claims have been made that certain vitamins can treat different cancers. However, research shows this is not the case. For example:. Proper balance and adequate levels of essential nutrients is important for a range of complex processes in our body.

When vitamins are taken as supplements, they are introduced into the body at levels that could never be achieved by eating even the healthiest of diets. For instance, provitamin A beta-carotene in food is accompanied by hundreds of its carotenoid relatives.

Simply taking a vitamin pill is not an instant fix for feeling run down or lacking in energy. When you artificially remove one of them and provide it completely out of context, it may not be as effective and, in the case of some vitamins, can have negative effects.

Vitamin and mineral supplements can also interfere with prescription medicines and medical treatments. In extreme cases, for example, where people take times the recommended dietary intake RDI , this can stop the work of anticonvulsant drugs, such as those used in epilepsy.

Many people mistakenly believe that since small amounts of vitamins are good for you, then large amounts must be better. For a healthy adult, if supplements are used, they should generally be taken at levels close to the RDI.

When choosing a supplement, look for active forms of the vitamin, such adenosylcobalamin or methylcobalamin, for easier absorption and use in the body.

Vitamin B12 can be found as a stand-alone vitamin or in vitamin B complex and multivitamin formulations. Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin that is also an antioxidant , which means it can help manage oxidative stress that plays a causal role in various health conditions. It is needed for collagen production and to help manage oxidative stress that can impair collagen formation.

Vitamin C also improves the absorption of nonheme iron, the form of iron in plant-based foods, and plays an important role in immune function. Food sources of vitamin C include citrus, peppers, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, kiwis, and strawberries. Whole food forms and extracts of vitamin C may be more effective than the synthetic ascorbic acid commonly found in many commercial supplements.

Vitamin D is considered a nutrient of public health concern since a large portion of the U. population is deficient in the vitamin. It can be challenging to get enough from foods and sun exposure alone.

Environmental factors like pollution, location distance from equator , use of sunblock blocks UVB rays which are needed for vitamin D production , pigment of skin more melanin present can make it more challenging to absorb UV rays , and season impact vitamin D levels.

Vitamin D is needed for calcium absorption and bone health as well as for maintaining a healthy immune system. A large body of research now exists on the extensive role of vitamin D in many aspects of immune health.

In addition to getting healthy levels of sun exposure and increasing intake of foods rich in vitamin D, supplementation of vitamin D can help meet your daily needs.

Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin made up of 8 different molecules such as tocopherols and tocotrienols. This vitamin doubles as an antioxidant that can help manage oxidative stress.

In supplements, it can be found alone, in multivitamins, or added as an ingredient to help maintain freshness due to its antioxidant properties.

A randomized control trial on the use of vitamin E along with vitamin C and raspberry leaf extract showed positive results in supporting skin appearance including anti-aging effects. Some additional research has emerged that may point to tocotrienols as the safer and more effective form of vitamin E to use in supplementation.

The Recommended Dietary Allowance RDA for vitamin E is 15mg or 22 IU daily for those 14 and older. Some of the best food sources of vitamin E include sunflower seeds, almonds, hazelnuts, and salmon.

Vitamin K consists of two types: K1 phylloquinone and K2 multiple types of menaquinones. K1 is the main dietary form of vitamin K and is present mainly in green leafy vegetables. K2 is mainly produced by bacteria in the gut and is also present in small amounts in animal-based foods and fermented foods.

Vitamin K plays various roles in the body, including involvement in blood clotting and bone metabolism. The K2 type is often combined with vitamin D, like in our Calcium Plus supplement to support bone health, since the two vitamins work together synergistically.

The RDA for vitamin K is mcg. Most people associate calcium with strong bones and teeth, for which it is definitely needed, but it also has other important functions in the body. Calcium helps the heart and other muscles contract, aids in nervous system function, and supports the release of hormones and enzymes, andsupports bone health.

The RDA for calcium is 1,,mg. Dairy is one of the primary sources of dietary calcium, along with non-dairy calcium sources like cooked dark leafy greens and small bone-in fish. Calcium supplementation may be particularly useful for those who do not consume dairy or have limited intake of calcium-rich foods.

One of the primary functions of iron is to help transport oxygen in the blood. Four atoms of iron reside inside each molecule of hemoglobin , which can bind up to four molecules of oxygen. A similar molecule called myoglobin also uses iron to provide oxygen inside muscle cells and connective tissue.

There are two types of iron: heme found in animal based products and nonheme iron found in plant based sources. Heme iron is more easily absorbed, while nonheme iron absorption can be boosted by simultaneous intake of vitamin C.

Proper gut health and stomach acid production are also needed for proper iron absorption. It is best to get iron from food intake ; however, if blood levels are measuring low, the person may be instructed by their healthcare provider to supplement. Those who menstruate or those who are pregnant have increased needs for iron.

New Esaential shows Essential vitamin alternatives vitanin of Essential vitamin alternatives from prostate biopsies. Discrimination at work is linked to high vitamih pressure. Improve digestion slimming pills fingers and toes: Poor circulation or Raynaud's phenomenon? Vitamins and minerals are as essential for living as air and water. Not only do they keep your body healthy and functionalthey protect you from a variety of diseases.

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