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Do You Need Vitamin Supplements?

Vitamin supplements are perceived to be popular methods for maintaining and benefiting health for all, but the benefits of supplements are not helpful for everyone. Vitamins themselves are essential for health, as they support the immune system and healthy nerves. This has led many to believe that vitamin supplements can benefit their health greatly; however, vitamin supplements usually are only recommended for those with deficient diets and may even cause adverse effects for others who do not need them.

Most people are able to get the vitamins they need from food, making vitamin supplements unnecessary. This is because vitamins are abundant in well-balanced, healthy diets, which make the additional vitamins derived from supplements unnecessary for most people. Though there are certain people that may benefit from vitamins, including those trying for pregnancy, those currently pregnant, and young children. Vitamin D in particular may be especially helpful for those with limited exposure to the sun. Vitamin supplements are the most necessary for groups of people suffering from diseases that make it difficult for them to absorb vitamins, including those diagnosed with Crohn's disease, celiac disease, or osteoporosis. For others that do not have deficient diets that require vitamin supplements, Harvard Medical School finds that the benefits of the supplements are minimal, but some studies have suggested that supplements may minimally reduce the risk of cancer, cataracts, and stroke in men.

Vitamin supplements may also cause adverse effects. These adverse effects can range from mild and temporary to serious. Mild side effects may include ​​constipation, diarrhea, stomachaches, and nausea. More serious side effects can have lasting impacts. For instance, the National Institute one Aging describes that supplements can possibly increase the risk of bleeding after an injury as well as alter one’s response to anesthesia during surgery. Additionally, it is possible for some supplements to react poorly with other medication being taken. Given the possible adverse effects from supplements, it is important that one follows the dietary and dosage recommendations for their age group and gender as well as consult with their doctor about whether or not they need such supplements.

In conclusion, vitamin supplements are not necessary or even helpful for most people, as these vitamins are readily available in well-balanced diets. It is recommended that those contemplating taking vitamin supplements consult with their doctor, who is able to provide expansive knowledge regarding one’s condition and the deficiencies they may be facing. This consultation will provide the most accurate and personalized knowledge for an informed decision.



Do I need vitamin supplements? NHS. 2019 November 22.

Do you need a daily supplement? Harvard Medical School. 2021 February 12.

Petre, A. Multivitamin Side Effects: Timespan and When to Be Concerned. Healthline. 2020 December 14.

Vitamins and Minerals for Older Adults. NIH. 2021 January 2.


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