Taking Too Many Vitamins? Side Effects of Vitamin Overdosing


These days, all the things from bottled water to orange juice appears to have souped-up ranges of nutritional vitamins and minerals in it. That will sound like a manner to assist cowl your dietary bases, particularly in case your weight loss program is lower than stellar. However routinely getting an overload of nutritional vitamins and minerals can harm you.

An excessive amount of vitamin C or zinc may trigger nausea, diarrhea, and stomach cramps. An excessive amount of selenium may result in hair loss, gastrointestinal upset, fatigue, and delicate nerve damage.

Whereas most individuals don’t get megadoses, when you eat a fortified cereal at breakfast, seize an vitality bar between meals, have enriched pasta for dinner, and take a day by day complement, you would simply be over the beneficial day by day consumption of a bunch of vitamins.

This is what you want to know to keep away from overdoing it.

“There isn’t any actual benefit to taking greater than the beneficial quantities of nutritional vitamins and minerals.” — Johanna Dwyer, RD

Dietary supplements: Test the Dose

Likelihood is, the unfortified meals you eat aren’t an issue. “It is fairly exhausting to overdo it from meals alone,” says Johanna Dwyer, RD, a senior analysis scientist with the Nationwide Institutes of Well being’s Workplace of Dietary Supplements.

So you may need to take into consideration the supplements you’re taking and fortified meals or drinks.

“Most individuals do not realize there is no actual benefit to taking greater than the beneficial quantities of nutritional vitamins and minerals, and so they do not acknowledge there could also be disadvantages,” Dwyer says.

“In the event you’re taking a complement, stick to 1 that is not more than the day by day worth,” Dwyer says. (Every day worth is the quantity of a vitamin or nutrient that an individual ought to get for optimum well being.)

Speak along with your physician about any supplements you take, together with nutritional vitamins and minerals, and the dose you take, too. That manner, your physician may help you retain doses in a secure vary.

“In the event you’re taking a primary multivitamin, there is no must worry taking an excessive amount of,” says Andrew Shao, PhD, senior vp of scientific and regulatory affairs for the Council for Accountable Vitamin, a commerce group for the dietary supplements business.

“Most multivitamins have such a large margin of security that even whenever you’re combining them with fortified meals, it is nonetheless not going to trigger you to keel over,” Shao says.

Refined Indicators You are Getting Too A lot

“I’ve not seen somebody off the road who was taking a poisonous stage of vitamin A or D — these are very uncommon,” says David Katz, MD, director of the Yale College Prevention Analysis Heart in New Haven, CT, whose medical observe makes a speciality of nutrition. “What I am extra prone to see is an individual with a dosing stage of dietary supplements that is larger than optimum.”

Scientists do not but know if routinely getting just a little bit an excessive amount of of a vitamin or mineral (versus a megadose) is an issue, Katz says.

“There could be hints of concern, however they might be very delicate indicators,” he says.

These pretty delicate signs might embody problem sleeping or concentrating, nerve issues similar to numbness or tingling, or feeling extra irritable — relying on the nutrient that is going overboard.

The larger concern, Katz says, is that we’re “garnishing the meals provide with overfortification.”

He says producers have shifted their focus from what they’ve taken out of meals — similar to its fats, sugar, or salt — to what they’re placing in, whether or not it is vitamin D, probiotics, or omega-3 fat — no matter nutrient is in vogue.

“When an increasing number of meals are enhanced, it turns into unattainable for shoppers to know what dose they’re getting over the course of a day,” Katz says. “Clinicians have to understand we could be introducing new dietary imbalances due to this observe.”

Three Vitamins to Watch

Dwyer says vitamin D, calcium, and folic acid are three nutrients you could get an excessive amount of of, particularly by way of dietary supplements.

Adults who recurrently far exceed the 4,000 worldwide models (IUs) day by day secure higher restrict for vitamin D may might find yourself with severe heart issues.

Folic acid is added to enriched grain merchandise — white flours, pasta, rice, breads, and cereals — to assist forestall beginning defects in infants because of folic acid deficiency in pregnant ladies. Whereas folic acid fortification has lower the variety of beginning defects by 25% to 50%, it might need created different well being considerations in folks getting an excessive amount of.

It is not exhausting to get greater than 1,000 micrograms of folic acid a day (the secure higher restrict for adults) from fortified meals and dietary supplements frequently. Doing so may disguise the indicators of a vitamin B12 deficiency in older adults. Vitamin B12 deficiency can typically result in everlasting nerve damage if left untreated.

There isn’t any want to fret about meals which can be naturally wealthy in folate.

“Most individuals can now get sufficient folic acid with out having to depend on dietary supplements,” Dwyer says.

In actual fact, she says, “most individuals haven’t any downside [with getting too much vitamins or minerals] if they begin with meals, which is the healthiest and most secure solution to get them.”


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