1. Health & Lifestyle

Are Vitamins really destroying your health?

Abha Toppo
Abha Toppo

Vitamins are easily available in the market. And some of the very common foods items like dairy products, nutritional shakes, cereals and baking flour contains vitamins. Since childhood we have been listening and reading that vitamin supplements are very helpful to our body.  And under certain circumstances, like immunodeficiency problems, vitamin supplements have proved helpful in relieving symptoms similar to drug administration. But what we don’t know is that if taken in large dosages, it can be overwhelmingly poisonous and destroy our health.

There is a widely held opinion that several diseases in human beings are mainly caused due to vitamin deficiencies and for this supplementation with mega dosages of vitamins can be helpful.

Now the question arises whether we can do well without these vitamin supplements or not? Actually, in the present world it is almost impossible to do well without these supplements. Due to various reasons like soil diminution, industrial food processing, storage conditions and low accessibility to fresh nutritious food, it becomes important to supplement your diet with vitamins as well as other essential nutrients missing in our food. People who actually need supplements are those under ‘extreme oxidative stress’ including people who are engaged in intense physical exercises, those with immunodeficiency diseases and the old people. Antioxidant nutrients help in reducing the metabolic stress caused by any disease or exercise, protecting the cells and tissues from oxidative damage.

The orthomolecular theory says that there is no difference between a natural and a synthetic vitamin molecule. According to this hypothesis, biologically identical molecules are indistinguishable from those synthesized by plants or animals. The theory also says that a person must support his or her body with right molecules that are necessary to sustain life.

Thousands of people today take vitamin supplements in order to prevent from nutritional deficiencies, assuming that it will compensate with their poor eating habits. The ones who usually consume large dosages of these supplements are fitness advocates, sportspersons, sick and the elderly, who have been told by their physicians that their vitamin requirements are more than the normal people. But the largely ignored fact here is that there is no proof that these people are doing well than those who don't take vitamin supplements.

Till so far we have been assuming that only fat soluble vitamins can potentially become poisonous.  It must be known that fat soluble vitamins A, D, E and K gets stored in the body and accumulate in high toxic levels when consumed in large dosages, hence a person should be cautious with their intake.  Vitamin poisoning is a big issue, which involves lots of misinformation, misinterpretation and misunderstanding. Furthermore, the information given by the vitamin manufacturers does not always reveal the full truth.

Here are the toxicity side effects of excess fat soluble vitamins:

Read More: If not The Right Dose of Vitamin

Vitamin A – abdominal pain, vomiting, eczema, headache, patchy hair loss, anemia, chronic liver disease and respiratory tract infection.

Vitamin E - fatigue, headache, nausea, allergic reaction, tongue swelling, blurred vision, excessive bleeding, increased oxidative stress, hypertension, decreased life span.

Vitamin D - although vitamin D poisoning is uncommon, toxicity can happen under certain medical conditions like primary hyperparathyroidism, tuberculosis and lymphoma. It must be noted that vitamin D is totally safe if produced by the body itself via UV sunlight exposure.

Vitamin K: supplementation with a synthetic form of vitamin K ‘Menadione’ has been linked with liver damage.

The most important difference between a natural and synthetic vitamin supplements is in their said potencies. People must know that natural vitamins derived from plant foods are never highly concentrated as nature provides us with balance, complexity and bio-availability but not with a high potency. On the other hand, synthetic and crystalline vitamins do come in high unnatural potencies.

Eat healthy….stay healthy!!!

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