Should you take vitamins as a preventive measure?

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Doctors are very often asked about multivitamins as preventive supplement. Here is why one should you should take/ not take multi vitamins:

Simple multivitamins are probably not required by most adults who eat a balanced diet and get regular sun exposure. Multivitamins may be actually be harmful in some people and these supplements should be taken on doctors recommendations.

  • To ensure sufficient vitamin intake, you should eat a diet with five to nine servings of vegetables and fruits per day. This diet promotes health not only by providing known vitamins, but also because it contains fibre and other less well-defined nutrients and replaces meat and animal fat.
  • Women of childbearing potential should take a vitamin supplement containing at least 400 micrograms of folic acid per day. Also, women who are trying to conceive should take a daily supplement of 400 to 800 micrograms folic acid or a prescription prenatal vitamin.
  • People who take vitamin A—rich diet, pregnant women, and those who are at increased risk for fractures or osteopenia should avoid supplements that contain vitamin A, including multivitamin supplements.
  • Blood tests for vitamin deficiency are useful in some patients. Marginal blood levels should not be over interpreted as abnormal. Only people with significant deficiencies should undergo a treatment plan to artificially increase vitamin levels.

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