Pour Those Vitamin Pills Down the Toilet …

Or … let them run through your body first, and then into the toilet. Either way, taking mega-doses of vitamins and other supplements just doesn’t do much for people, other than enriching the vitamin content of their toilet water.

Latest proof: High doses of Vitamin D and calcium do nothing for most people, because the body gets plenty out of a normal healthy diet and from normal sun exposure (for making Vitamin D).

Worse, although less conclusive: Vitamin D can actually be harmful in large doses.

Here’s a discussion of the latest evidence.

And what just is a vitamin, anyway? Here’s an excerpt from an article on the subject at the website of the American Council on Science and Health, a debunker of health myths of all sorts:

Vitamyths
By Josh Bloom, Ph.D.

If you ask 100 people what a vitamin is, at least 100 of them will get it wrong. They will have some vague ideas: everyone should take them, they are derived from natural sources and the more you take, the healthier you will be. All of this is wrong.

The definition is actually rather simple: vitamins are nutrients required in very small amounts to promote many of the thousands of chemical reactions that make life possible. Most vitamins function as catalysts – substances typically used in miniscule quantities to promote these reactions that would otherwise not take place or would do so millions of times more slowly. Vitamins must be consumed because (with few exceptions) they are not produced within the body.

The quantity of vitamins actually needed is unexpectedly small. If you add up the total weight of all vitamins in the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) you come up with 150 milligrams, roughly equivalent to 5 grains of uncooked rice. This tiny amount is sufficient to support a wide-ranging array of biochemical reactions that generate energy, synthesize proteins and regulate hormone levels, just to mention a few.

Surprisingly, nearly all vitamin supplements come from synthetic rather than natural sources. The two forms are chemically identical and your body cannot tell them apart, so the source is immaterial. Even vitamin C, which could easily be extracted from fruits or vegetables, is man-made in vitamin pills.

More surprisingly, large doses of vitamins can be harmful and even fatal. [Emphasis added by protectpatientblog.] Vitamins are divided into two classes: water-soluble and fat-soluble. Each group behaves differently when taken in large quantities. Water-soluble (B and C) vitamins are less toxic, since they are rapidly excreted in the urine, where they nourish the life forms in your sewer at the expense of your wallet. By contrast, fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, and K) are stored in body fat, and they are eliminated much more slowly, making them more dangerous. Indeed, numerous studies have shown that large doses of vitamin E are associated with cardiotoxicity and early death. Excess vitamin A causes liver toxicity, anemia and hair loss, and is especially dangerous for the fetuses of pregnant women. It is chemically related to the acne drug Retin A, which can cause serious birth defects.

Read more here:

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