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  1. #1
    Senior Member Mal12345's Avatar
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    Default How Much is Enough Multi-vitamin and Vitamin C?

    As I mentioned in a previous post, I visited a local clinic to have a checkup on my meds. The PA (a kind of fake doctor, or perhaps another name for "nurse") asked me about other types of medication I take, and I mentioned 500 mg of Vitamin C and a multi-vitamin per day.

    He was really impressed with this, and stated I must be keeping myself at the peak of physical fitness.

    The problem with this statement is this: 500 mg of C is probably way, way more than I need, or anybody needs. I happened to know, before that visit, that 80 mg of C is the RDA (recommended daily allowance) in the US. And taking 500 mg of C probably means that most of it goes right through me. So in fact, 500 mg of C doesn't keep anybody in great physical shape. More is not necessarily better. And in fact, at one time I calculated that taking 14 lbs of C would literally kill me, based on my weight at that time.

    In case you're wondering, the multi-vitamin contains no C.

    I've had it up to here with PAs. Even the FNPs have been better than those douches. At one time I assumed that a PA, being a Physician's Assistant, was somewhere above an FNP or CNP. But experience teaches that the exact opposite is true. My next appointment will be with an MD.

    How much is enough multi-vitamin and vitamin C? And how can I tell if it's even making a health difference? I've experimented with meds in the past to determine how much was just the right amount, but this was based on how it made me feel. With vitamins I don't notice any physiological changes whatsoever. So how can I tell?
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  2. #2
    deplorable basketcase Tellenbach's Avatar
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    I don't think you can overdose on vitamin C or the B vitamins; these are the water soluble vitamins and if you take too much, you'll just lose it in the urine. I've seen a dose response curve with oral vitamin C. There is an upper limit to that value although some people believe you can drastically increase that limit with liposomal vitamin C. I take 500 mg vitamin C daily for colds; I don't know if it's doing any good since I'm also taking 2000 IU of vitamin D3 (for about 17 months); I haven't had a cold since, but it's too early to draw conclusions.

    I'd be careful about vitamin E since that's a fat soluble vitamin and it can accumulate in the body. Most sources I've seen recommend about 200 to 400 IU. Some studies do show vitamin E reducing the risk of heart attacks by 50%. It does this by preventing the oxidation of LDL and slowing down the developing of arteriosclerotic plaques.

    I'm a bit biased towards the B vitamins since I've read a bunch of books touting their effects. There is a theory of heart disease that an elevated level of homocysteine in the blood is what causes arteriosclerosis (not cholesterol), a hardening of the arteries. The level of homocysteine is regulated by three B vitamins: B6, B12, and folic acid. Many people don't get enough of these vitamins because the processing of food depletes these vitamins. For instance, canning vegetables reduces the B vitamin content 60 to 80%.

    To answer the question of "How much is enough?", we'd need to know what kind of foods you eat and whether or not you have any health conditions.

  3. #3
    Superwoman Red Herring's Avatar
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    IIRC overdosing on vitamin C can be problematic during pregnancy. The problem is that the child's body gets used to an overly high level in the mother and then shows signs of undersupply when receiving a normal diet.

    It's been years though that I read this.
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    Emperor/Dictator kyuuei's Avatar
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    Overdosing on any vitamin/mineral isn't completely grand for your body. Generally speaking though, the vitamins just get flushed out and wasted when you take too much. Build up over time could cause some issues, but it is unlikely for that to happen.

    Here is what I do and it works just fine: Take half. Usually those supplements and stuff call for 2 pills a day, or something like that. So just take one. You get a ton of vitamins and minerals (considering the low doses you need of them) in your general food groups. And the servings are set up for both pills. If you even eat a quasi-occasionally-healthy diet and it isn't full of ramen noodles and frowny faces, half of the multi-vitamin serving will get you exactly what your body needs and only a few bits will be flushed and wasted out of your system.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mal+ View Post
    As I mentioned in a previous post, I visited a local clinic to have a checkup on my meds. The PA (a kind of fake doctor, or perhaps another name for "nurse") asked me about other types of medication I take, and I mentioned 500 mg of Vitamin C and a multi-vitamin per day.

    He was really impressed with this, and stated I must be keeping myself at the peak of physical fitness.

    The problem with this statement is this: 500 mg of C is probably way, way more than I need, or anybody needs. I happened to know, before that visit, that 80 mg of C is the RDA (recommended daily allowance) in the US. And taking 500 mg of C probably means that most of it goes right through me. So in fact, 500 mg of C doesn't keep anybody in great physical shape. More is not necessarily better. And in fact, at one time I calculated that taking 14 lbs of C would literally kill me, based on my weight at that time.

    In case you're wondering, the multi-vitamin contains no C.

    I've had it up to here with PAs. Even the FNPs have been better than those douches. At one time I assumed that a PA, being a Physician's Assistant, was somewhere above an FNP or CNP. But experience teaches that the exact opposite is true. My next appointment will be with an MD.

    How much is enough multi-vitamin and vitamin C? And how can I tell if it's even making a health difference? I've experimented with meds in the past to determine how much was just the right amount, but this was based on how it made me feel. With vitamins I don't notice any physiological changes whatsoever. So how can I tell?
    I have a hunch you would like this book, especially the stuff about the history of supplements and Linus Pauling's goofy claims about vitamin C. http://www.amazon.com/Do-You-Believe...rds=paul+offit
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  6. #6
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    PAs are for when you have a fever and sore throat and need to see someone on short notice. You probably want to see about talking to a nutritionist.
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  7. #7
    Senior Member Mal12345's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cafe View Post
    PAs are for when you have a fever and sore throat and need to see someone on short notice. You probably want to see about talking to a nutritionist.
    Are you talking to me again?

    I went to a PA last June about a fever and a cough. He said it was the common cold. LOL LOL LOL
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  8. #8
    Senior Member SensEye's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mal+ View Post
    How much is enough multi-vitamin and vitamin C? And how can I tell if it's even making a health difference? I've experimented with meds in the past to determine how much was just the right amount, but this was based on how it made me feel. With vitamins I don't notice any physiological changes whatsoever. So how can I tell?
    I believe after 30mg or so of Vitamin C you're just pissing the rest away. On the bright side the excess is pretty harmless and unlike many supplements, Vitamin C is inexpensive so the damage to your wallet is not onerous either.

    You probably won't know if the Vitamins are doing you much good until very old age. If you get there with minimal health issues, they may have helped. If you develop all sorts of health problems, you can be confident they didn't do you much good.

    I'm pretty sure if you engineered your diet such that you got all your RDA of vitamins from the foods your eat, you would be way better off than taking a daily multi-vitamin. I'm too lazy to do that myself, but it's a goal I aspire to.

  9. #9
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    Overdosing on Vitamin C is SOOOOOOOOO rare... that when I mean rare, you'd literally have to eat so many tablets at once to have any(if there is really any) negative side-effects other than pissing all that money back out. The ones you should be worried about are the other types of Vitamins and Minerals that do show symptoms if you constantly overdose (like Iron and Calcium) or that certain vitamins and minerals interfere with other vitamins and minerals (too much Zinc likes to kick Copper and Iron to the side.)

    Other than that, Vitamin C is not hard to come by... especially if you eat fruits and/or vegetables at least once a day (like an Orange a day.)

    Your daily needs of vitamins may be a bit different depending on circumstances. A multi-vitamin doesn't cover all your bases. Even then, you are less likely to overdose if you eat to get your nutrients. If your doctor finds out through blood work of some kind that you are low on some kind of vitamin or mineral he/she might tell you that you might need to supplement that back to "normal" for your age.

  10. #10
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    500mg of Vitamin C is just fine. Most studies saw that the most benefit was had at about 200mg-250mg, and after that there wasn't much to gain. Also 90mg, the RDA, isn't enough. As for vitamins, I recommend AOR Ortho-Core, or AOR multi basics, and you determine how much to take by entering your meals for a week into cron-o-meter and seeing how far off you are from the RDAs on average. You then take the minimum number of pills (and/or make diet changes) that will help you to the RDA for each vitamin or to just a bit more than that. Once that's done, then you adjust your intake to deal with any special conditions you may have. I also recommend supplementing with Acetyl L-Carnitine (and CoQ10 if you are over 30).

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