What are vitamins?
Vitamins are essential nutrients which your body cannot produce itself. They play a vital role in the functioning of all bodily processes. Vitamins are found naturally in foods such as fruits, vegetables, meats, milk products and eggs. Vitamin deficiencies can cause various health problems including fatigue, weakness and even death! There is no way to obtain these vitamins without eating them or taking pills.
How do I know if my diet contains enough vitamins?
You can check whether you have enough vitamins by looking at the ingredients list of any food product. If there are no vitamins listed then your diet does not contain enough of them. You may need to increase your intake of certain vitamins to avoid deficiency symptoms. For example, if you eat too little vitamin C, you will experience dry mouth and other unpleasant effects. On the other hand, if you don’t eat enough vitamin C, you could develop rickets (a condition where bones become soft and fragile) and osteomalacia (softening of the bones).
Can vitamins be harmful?
Yes, some vitamins are toxic. For example, very high doses of vitamin A can be toxic and even cause death. Certain people (such as pregnant women) should not take high doses of vitamin A. It is also possible to consume too much of certain B-complex vitamins. Large amounts of some vitamins can cause diarrhea and other unpleasant side effects. You should always read the labels on multivitamin bottles before taking them. If you experience any negative side effects, consult your doctor immediately.
Can vitamins cure disease?
Most doctors and scientists now believe that there is little evidence to suggest that vitamins can help fight or prevent disease. Although it is true that many diseases are linked to vitamin deficiencies, most doctors believe this is due to the fact that people who are sick often have restricted diets which lack certain vitamins. For example, a person with a poor diet might not consume enough fruit and vegetables to get enough vitamin C. It would be a mistake to assume that vitamin C can prevent the common cold, because most colds are caused by viruses rather than a lack of vitamins. However, some alternative medicine practitioners claim that high doses of certain vitamins can cure or prevent diseases such as cancer and heart disease. Large studies in the US have concluded that there is no evidence to support such claims.
What are multivitamins?
A multivitamin is a supplement which contains many vitamins. They come in many forms such as tablets, chewable tablets, liquids and gels. Most multivitamins provide 100% of the daily recommended allowance (RDA) of all essential vitamins such as vitamin C, vitamin A and vitamin E. Some supplements also contain minerals such as calcium. There are also ‘special’ multivitamins targeted at people with certain conditions or people who have special dietary needs such as vegetarians or women who are pregnant. There are even some multivitamins which are high in specific vitamins such as vitamin B12 or folic acid.
What should I look for when buying multivitamins?
Always check the label and ingredients before you buy a multivitamin. It is important that you know what you’re taking, so if you don’t understand some of the words that appear on the packaging, do not buy them! You should also make sure that your multivitamin of choice contains all the vitamins required for health. If you are a vegetarian, you should consult a doctor, pharmacist or nutritionist before taking any multivitamins due to the increased risk of vitamin deficiencies in this group (celiacs disease). Check the expiry date on the packaging too, and do not buy vitamins that are past their sell-by or use-by date.
How do I take multivitamins?
Always follow the dosage instructions on the packaging and take your vitamins at the same time every day. Most multivitamins can be taken either with or without food, but it is best if you maintain a consistent routine.
Can I buy multivitamins online?
Yes, of course! Buying vitamins online has never been easier. Sites like Amazon offer a wide range of multivitamin products from big brands like Centrum and One-A-Day at affordable prices.
Sources & references used in this article:
Methods for producing fertilizers and feed supplements from agricultural and industrial wastes by LP Sower – US Patent 6,682,578, 2004 – Google Patents
Effects of feeding sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas) vines as a supplement on feed intake, growth performance, digestibility and carcass characteristics of Sidama goats … by T Megersa, M Urge, A Nurfeta – Tropical animal health and production, 2013 – Springer
Feed intake and utilization in sheep fed graded levels of dried moringa (Moringa stenopetala) leaf as a supplement to Rhodes grass hay by F Gebregiorgis, T Negesse, A Nurfeta – Tropical Animal Health and …, 2012 – Springer
Yerba Mate (Ilex paraguarensis) as a novel feed supplement for growing lambs by E Po, K Horsburgh, HW Raadsma, P Celi – Small Ruminant Research, 2012 – Elsevier
Evaluation of effective microbes (EM) as non-conventional feed supplement to lactating crossbred cows and barn malodor control under Ethiopian condition by G tu Kitaw, T Daba, A Kehaliw, G Assefa… – Journal of Renewable …, 2013 – researchgate.net