An article about a book was posted on the guardian the other day (see here) suggesting that supplements are bad. Now, I’m an open minded person, and if there indeed has been some research to show that supplements are bad, I will accept it, however, I got a bit dubious about the article in the first line, when the journalist didn’t even know why vitamins are called vitamins. (For those interested, it is a combination of the words ‘vital’ and ‘amine’).
It goes on to bad mouth vitamins and suggests they cause diseases rather than prevent – which I was again dubious about, as there are actually 100000s of studies shown that correct supplementation does offer protection.
By correct supplementation, I mean using properly tested actually healthy supplements, not some of the rubbish that is mass produced in some parts of the world.
Anyway, after reading it (and deciding that it was rubbish designed to shock and scare), I noticed that it was the topic of a LinkedIn group I am part of. After reading I was glad to see that in fact many health professionals are of the same opinion.
Here are some quotes from the discussion:
“The RDA of most of the vitamins and minerals are actually just barely enough to keep a person alive.”
“The one thing that never gets reported is the source of the nutrients they use in this testing. When we can compare the synthetic nutrients with those derived from food sources, we might have some useful information.”
“I have a big problem with that article. Yes people can over dose on vitamins, and do and that not only causes vitamin toxicities however many people simply don’t get enough of the essential vitamins and minerals, and would benefit from supplementation. Getting things naturally is always better however many people are lazy and tend to have poor diets; based primarily on sugary drinks and various breads. This article gives people the message that supplementation is bad for all groups which isn’t the case. It is essential to pregnant women for example, growing children with poor diets, people with digestive issues leading to malabsorption etc.“
“Not all supplements are created equal. My family and I have been using them with great success for many years. No, they don’t replace food, but they have their place.”
“Paul Offi Paul Offit has made of fortune from vaccines. Talk about a multimillion $$$ con…!” (Paul Offi being the author)
“It was Dr Offit who has widely quoted that babies can tolerate 10,000 vaccines at once. He is also an opponent of complimentary medicine. He has even called for the abolition of the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM).
He criticizes those who are vaccine deniers, he clearly has an agenda here. There is plenty of research and there are plenty of studies to support evidence that supplements do help.”
I would love to post the whole conversation, but it would be massive, and it is a private group so I can’t share. The message was clear though:
High quality supplements do offer protection, but at the moment people are not able to discern between high quality and low quality. Also, the author is (from what others tell me) a nutter, and not to be trusted anyway.
Sadly though, the conclusion of this little blog post is not going to be read by half as many as the conclusion of the ‘shock’ paper article….such as shame, but at least the nutritionist know the truth, and that is a start