According to health survey, almost one in three people take a vitamin supplement every day, while 15 per cent turn to high-dose supplements for a quick fix.
However, do these vitamin pills really recover the health and vitality that they promise?
Vitamin pills are prescribed and taken as ‘health insurance’ to boost energy, slow down ageing and reduce the risk of chronic diseases.
In the midst of all these health recoveries and stability, not many have seen how it has become a big business in the process.
Vitamins perform key functions:
- Vitamin C builds immunity and connective tissue.
- Vitamin A enhances immunity and helps growth.
- B-vitamins are essential for energy.
- Vitamin D strengthens bones.
There is no doubt that without vitamins we would most definitely die and fall seriously ill when we don’t get the right amount.
Apparently, the need and importance of vitamin pills and their benefits are increasingly being brought into question.
While many studies prove that vitamin supplements have a range of health benefits, others suggest that they are harmful and could lead to unwanted results.
- We do need vitamin but its excess is neither necessary nor better.
- Mega doses of single vitamins can have toxic effects.
- One must particularly care when taking fat-soluble vitamins like vitamin A.
- Stored in the liver, it can accumulate to reach toxic levels and cause liver damage.
Despite of being labelled as ‘natural‘, more than 90 per cent of all vitamin supplements are synthetic and clearly unnatural. In fact, a new evidence has emerged, which claim that these unnatural forms of vitamin are more harm than good.
According to the Organic Consumers Association in the USA, man-made vitamins cannot be used by the body in the same way as natural versions. “Since synthetic vitamins are isolated and are not recognised by the body, they are often excreted in urine or stored in fat.”
Futhermore, it has been studied that the synthetic version of vitamin A is significantly more toxic than the natural form.
The best ways to intake vitamin
‘A varied diet including fresh fruit and vegetables, wholegrains, meat, fish pulses and eggs should contain enough vitamins for health.’
- If your diet falls short or you are busy, stressed, pregnant, breastfeeding or struggling with illness, then consider taking a vitamin pill, but make sure it is non-synthetic and food grade.
- Super-food supplements from nutrient-rich natural sources give a variety of vitamins natural forms that are even easy for the body to absorb.
- For a 360 degree nutritional boost, nutritionists recommend supplementing daily with spirulina, chlorella or bee pollen, whereas fish or plant oil supplements are also a good source to boost one’s health.
- To boost vitamin C levels naturally, take rosehip supplements, which is said to be the richest natural source of vitamin C that had also been widely collected after World War II, in order to make vitamin-C rich syrup for children.
When to take vitamin pills
- Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should take a multivitamin.
- Women trying to conceive or those in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy should supplement with a multivitamin containing folic acid.
- Vitamin D supplementation is recommended for darker skinned people and those over 65.
- The Department of Health advises children aged 6 months to 5 years to supplement with vitamins A, C and D.
- People who are malnourished due to digestive difficulties or chronic illness.
- During intense physical training for sport.