Read just about any health article online and you’ll feel as though you’re a waste of life if you don’t take a multivitamin daily. Take Vitamin C to curb colds. Down some B vitamins to avoid heart disease. And, you must take a multivitamin to ensure you’re getting everything you need. Vitamin companies push them, so it must be true, right? In some cases, sure. But, for those who get plenty of vitamins in their diet, they may just be wasting money on supplements. Here’s the truth about vitamin supplements:
Must Have Multivitamin?
Multivitamins are, perhaps, the most-pushed vitamins in the health industry. Your parents probably even insisted that you take a Flintstones chewable every morning. Just how necessary are they, though? According to some experts, probably not. Studies have proven that those who take a multivitamin daily aren’t necessarily healthier than those who don’t. Bottom line: if you’re eating a balanced diet, you’ll get all the nutrients you need anyway. Spending money on more vitamins is likely overkill, especially because taking too many of some vitamins can be harmful.
Some people absolutely do need a calcium supplement, especially if their doc suggests it. Calcium helps make bones strong and can even improve sleep. But, if you already have plenty of dairy in your diet, extra calcium may be unnecessary. It could even be harmful, as excess calcium can cause hypercalcemia, a condition that can mess with your kidneys, stomach, muscles, and more.
Fooling Folic Acid?
Folic acid is absolutely an important vitamin to have, especially for pregnant women. In fact, the FDA made it mandatory in 1998 for most grain products to contain folic acid, which can prevent birth defects, prevent DNA changes that can harm the body, and replenish and maintain cells. But, it’s best to get this vitamin naturally from your foods rather than in a supplement. It’s typically found in leafy veggies, like spinach and brussels sprouts, and whole grain foods. As long as you stick to incorporating these foods in your diet, you may not need extra folic acid. Of course, if you’re preggo, you may still need some a supplement.