The Miracle Pill
Multivitamins aren’t always bad news though, certain multivitamins and dietary supplements help make the lives of certain people easier. Doctors will rarely tell a patient to take a multivitamin or eating a healthy diet but there are some cases where it is almost mandatory that the patient does take one. For instance, a patient is lactose intolerant and has a hard time breaking down and digesting dairy products. Dairy products are a main source of the essential mineral, calcium. So the doctor would have to prescribe a calcium tablet so that patient can get an adequate amount of calcium into their diet. The same could go for those with a deficiency of vitamin D, pregnant patients who should get folate and prenatal multivitamins, or those with cognitive impairment, when I would recommend a vitamin B complex. Another benefit is that vitamin D protects against a long list of ills: Men with adequate levels of D have about half the risk of heart attack as men who are deficient. And getting enough D appears to lower the risk of at least half a dozen cancers. Vitamin D is the sunshine vitamin. You make it when sunlight hits your skin. Yet thanks to sunscreen and workaholic or TV addict habits, most people don’t make enough. Even with no scientific evidence yet, there is still some hope for the evolution of multivitamins. Here is a list of certain vitamins and supplements that have shown to have positive effects on the human body:
Fish Oil Pills- Evidence from a number of studies has shown that the one-two punch of lengthened telomeres and reduced inflammation could potentially decrease the risk for other major diseases associated with aging like heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, arthritis, and Alzheimer’s disease, study authors say. Plus, Omega-3 supplementation reduced oxidative stress, caused by excessive free radicals in the blood, by about 15 percent. So, while omega-3s won’t prevent wrinkles or other physical signs of aging, they could help you live a longer, happier life.
Vitamin D- Improving vitamin D status by increasing its level in the blood could have a number of non-skeletal health benefits. Such as, lowering the risk of people who have a higher chance of contracting cancer, cardiovascular diseases, infectious diseases and autoimmune diseases. Even though vitamin D deficiency is associated with an increased risk for a particular disease, some studies go a step further and provide direct evidence that improvement in vitamin D status plays a large role in improving immunity and lowering the risk for many diseases. Vitamin D is unique in that it can be both ingested and synthesized by the body with sun exposure. It is then converted by both the liver and kidneys to a form that the body can use.
Folic Acid- Folate is key in the development of red blood cells or erythrocytes. A lack of this compound can make the body susceptible to cancer. In addition, the body’s defense mechanism, the white blood cells, are also manufactured in the presence of folate supplements. Several studies have indicated that folate supplements can reduce depression. A deficiency may cause an increased risk of depression and dementia. Adequate folate levels are necessary for proper brain functioning. Studies have shown that folate benefits the brain by slowing down the effects of aging. Lastly, according to Dr. Melissa Conrad Stoppler from Georgetown University, “the appropriate development of an unborn child’s brain and spinal cord, is dependent on foods rich in folate. A lack of folate during pregnancy can lead to gaps in the development of the spinal cord, which can result in paralysis, brain damage, or a stillborn child.”
Even though there are many side effects that come with multivitamins and supplements there is a a lot of evidence that shows the potential of the pills. Supplements should be taken in moderation and the consumer should always consult their physician before taking any sort of supplement.