There are great supplements, good supplements, and marginal supplements. What should you look for?
1. Make sure there is a safety seal on your vitamins and minerals.
2. Choose products made by a big pharmaceutical company, it is far safer. (Sorry small businesses)
3. Personally, I would not get anything or ingest anything produced in Mexico. I say that because of their fertilizer.
4. Beware of false claims on the bottle. (Haven’t we thought we would see the pounds fly off from those diet pills? It doesn’t happen.)
5. The list of all the components should be on the back in decreasing order of weight.
Calcium Pills and Vitamin D: I know I was at Walgreen’s looking for chewable calcium pills today with not too much vitamin D. I take a supplement of D3-5,000 mg per day to maintain my vitamin D level that was very low at one time. One has to be careful of mega dosing of high doses of a single nutrient.
Vitamin D3 and Vitamin D2: Northern states often have patients with vitamin D (D3) deficiencies. Vitamin D3 is better than D2 There are foods with vitamin D in them.. It is good to have this checked by a blood test. Your doctor will tell you whether you should take vitamin D and calcium pills.
Overindulging in Calcium: Too much calcium can cause pancreatic cancer, there can be excessive calcium in the urine and even the blood, your bones and kidneys can become damaged.
Vitamin D Issues: Fortified foods with D help. I know I drink a glass of OJ every day, I love cereal, and have salmon once week. There are others sources as bread (oops almost wrote breast), light tuna, and other fatty fish. Vitamin D is the sunshine vitamin. Often women who are postmenopausal may start to have calcium and vitamin D problems. There has been an association of vitamin D and cancer. Check out the research.
6. Look at the expiration date on your pills.
7. Make sure there is a manufacturers contact information.
8. Look for trustworthy seals like USP or NSF.
9. Choose the pill size that you can swallow easily with or without water.
10. Milligrams is the mg.
11. Micrograms is the mcg.
12. IU is the International Unit.
Dietary Guidelines: Are Americans getting their dietary guidelines? Some sources state that once a week many Americans do not get their necessary dietary requirements.
Vegans: Vegans on a macrobiotic diet or 1,500 calories or less should take supplements. They should talk to their family physician. Having blood work done is important. Also they should ask to be tested for a B12 deficiency. People who pernicous anemia, an autoimmune disease often have to take B12.
Vegans: Vegas have a hard time with B12 because they don’t eat eggs, poultry, clams, fish and meat which are rich sources. Fortified cereals and breads are as well. Their diet is high in beans, etc.
Antiacids/Heart Burn: I have taken Nexium for years, and I didn’t know it can interfere in B12 abortion. When you turn 50 your stomach secretes less acid to break down and even absorb the B12. I didn’t know aspirin and certain antibiotics can effect B12 absorption.
Physicans Recommendations: Did you know that 79% of physicians do recommend vitamins to their patients? This from the CRN survey. Physicans recommend it for bone, joint, heart, and overall health.
Eating Fruits, Veggies, and Grains: Are you eating enough veggies? Go to www.myplate.gov to determine if you are. We should eat 1 1/2 cups of fresh fruit a day and 2 1/2 cups of vegetables a day. Then 50% of our grains should be whole grains.
B12 Again: What’s the scoop on B12? Vegans can be deficient on this. B12 it is suppose to lower your Alzheimer’s Disease risk. B12 plays an effect on fatigue. I remember when I had to have shots for B12, I was dead dog tired. B12 is needed to make cells, for your your DNA and for blood cell production.
Calcium 101: Calcium is important. I know I bought some chewable ones today. Cheese affects my cholesterol. You can get calcium from cheese, milk, yogurt, fortified breads, cereals, and non-dairy milk.
Excessive Calcium Warnings: Too many calcium supplements increase ones risk of kidney stones and can even affect iron absorbtion.
Calcium Supplements: If you take Nexium or similar products you may need to take Clacium Citrate or Citracal.
Calcium 101: Calcium is good for the bones, prevents osteoporosis. There are some studies that say calcium supplements increase heart disease and can build up plaque in the arteries. Too much calcium is bad too!