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Dietary supplements include vitamins, fish oil, herbs, minerals like calcium, and more. About half of U. But should you? Food is the best way to get your vitamins and minerals. But it sometimes can be hard to eat enough fresh veggies, fruits, whole grains, and other healthy options. A multivitamin can be a safe way to boost your nutrients.
But some folks may need extra help, says Jerlyn Jones, a registered dietitian and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Are or might get pregnant. You may not get enough iron from food, especially if you get morning sickness. And all women who are pregnant, or trying to be, should take folic acid. Care for a young. Infants and children may need help getting vitamin D and iron. Eat a restricted or limited diet. Are older than Your body starts to absorb less of vitamins D and B12 as you get older. After you reach middle age, you may need to take extra steps to get enough.
Had gastric bypass surgery. Your gut may not absorb nutrients as well. Have certain genetic or health conditions. You may have trouble absorbing nutrients if you have:. If you think that your diet lacks certain vitamins or minerals, your doctor may recommend a blood test to confirm. Nutritional deficiencies are rare in the U. Among the list are:. But if you also eat fortified foods and drinks, you might go over the tolerable upper level UL for some nutrients.
That can raise your chances of side effects. Some might be mild, like nausea. But others, like bleeding, can be serious. You may bleed more during surgery. Anesthesia may not work the right way. Beta-carotene and vitamin A. High doses may raise the chances of lung cancer if you smoke. Overuse of vitamins like C and E may trigger tumor growth. They may also interfere with your cancer treatments. Vitamin B Newer supplements have very high doses. Safe vitamin supplements may get side effects like anxiety, dizziness, or headaches if you take too much.
Vitamin D. Too much of this can lead to a buildup of calcium hypercalcemia. That may give you kidney stones. Certain dietary supplements are proven to help. For example, calcium and vitamin D can lower bone loss and fractures. But many products, including herbs like ginkgo biloba, lack solid evidence for their health claims.
Omega-3 fatty acids. Animal research shows that fish oil may promote heart health, help blood flow, and lower inflammation. Research on humans is less clear. But some studies suggest it may:. These are a good way to fix a nutrient deficiency.
That includes heart disease, cancer, or diabetes. Supplements for age-related eye disease ARED. A certain mix of antioxidants, zinc, and omega-3 fatty acids may slow down ARED. Always check with your doctor first, especially about how much to take, Jones advises. Good rules to follow include:. It may be easier to remember to take your vitamins if you keep them in your Safe vitamin supplements. But light, moisture, and medicine can make a poor combo. Keep your supplements somewhere cool and dry, such as on your dresser.
Do You Need a Supplement? Talk to your doctor if you: Are or might get pregnant. Continued Possible Deficiencies If you think that your diet lacks certain vitamins or minerals, your doctor may recommend a blood test to confirm.
No matter what kind of diet you follow, tell your doctor if you have these symptoms: Extreme hair loss Bone or t pain Serious tiredness Irregular heartbeat Vision changes Wounds that heal slowly Nutritional deficiencies are rare in the U. Certain supplements warrant extra caution. Boyd says they include: Beta-carotene and vitamin A. Continued Research on Safe vitamin supplements Certain dietary supplements are proven to help. But some studies suggest it may: Ease symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, when taken along with other RA medicine Lower your triglycerides, when taken as a prescription Research to prove the benefits of omega-3 supplements continues.
Tips on Use and Storage Always check with your doctor first, especially about how much to take, Jones advises. You may need a separate supplement. Could I have CAD? Missing Teeth?Safe vitamin supplements
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