Need Vitamin Supplements? Do Vitamin Supplements work?

Vitamin Supplements

A very common perception with vitamin pills is that they are medicines and hence best to be avoided. However, they are not drugs. They are necessary nutrients that one may suffer a biological deficiency of or may not be getting enough of from natural food sources. The debate here is whether one should take vitamin tablets at all. Experts say that one should not be a fanatic pill popper. Vitamins present in your food are the best way to get the necessary nutrients. That apart, if anybody has any deficiency, he/she must imbibe vitamins under proper medical supervision. Except for vitamins B complex and C, which are relatively safe, one should never pop other vitamin supplements without prescription. Unlike single-vitamin pills, multivitamins can be, and rather should be, taken. And one need not get a prescription for multivitamins, where all the vitamins are present in token amounts and can't cause any type of overdose.

"Vitamins are no Substitute for Food. They are supplements to be taken along with a Good Diet"

Today there are more reasons why one should have vitamin tablets/tonics daily. The increased consumption of processed foods like pizza, pastries, fried chips and burgers (basically foods that do not have any nutrients) make it essential to supplement the diet with pills. Caffeinated products like tea, coffee, all types of aerated drinks and chocolates should me minimized, if not abstained from, as they prohibit the absorption of vitamins. Alcohol and tobacco products are even worse.

Besides, our methods of cooking, heating and reheating reduce the nutrient levels in food. Just the process of washing rice removes 40% of thiamine B1 and nicotinic acid B3. The nutrient level in food is determined by the quality of the soil in which the food grows. The chemicals and fertilizers used in farming today are harmful and may ruin both the nutrient quality and quantity of the crop.

Important Points to Remember about Vitamin Supplements

  1. A person cannot make up for poor dietary habits, negative attitude, and lack of exercise by taking pills, drugs or nutritional supplements. Popping vitamins isn't an answer to good health. Vitamins are no substitute for food. They are supplements to be taken along with a good diet for dealing with deficiency.
  2. Herbal based products are usually easier on the system. But the problem is they are often not standardized. So whether it is herbal or synthetic, always buy your vitamins after consulting a medical practitioner.
  3. Before deciding to pop any vitamin, one needs to determine one's level of requirement through a registered dietician. This is done based on one's lifestyle, family history, fitness and activity levels.
More information on vitamin supplements - A MUST READ

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