Let's talk about vitamins and supplements. We've all heard commercials and advertisements on taking vitamins and supplements to improve our health. Do we need them? Are they necessary? When should we take them? When are they all a gimmick? Vitamins are in all of our foods. If you have a healthy diet, you should be getting adequate amounts of vitamins and nutrients in them. So you need to ask yourself, when do I need additional vitamins or supplements? If you have certain disease states where your body's unable to absorb or metabolize certain vitamins, that might be a time you might need to take additional supplements, whether it be orally or intravenously. For example, if you have iron deficiency anemia, you may need iron supplementation above what's in your regular dietary intake. If you're an older individual with risk of osteoporosis, you might need extra vitamin D and calcium. If you've had certain types of gastric surgeries, you might need extra folate vitamin B12. In most normal, healthy individuals, you do not need any additional vitamins other than what's in your normal diet. However, certain patients with certain disease states with vitamin deficiencies will and should have vitamin supplementations. My advice is, talk to your doctor and determine if supplements are right for you. Remember, excessive amounts of certain vitamins can also be toxic and cause side effects and can do more harm than good. Therefore, don't take vitamins blindly, have a conversation, and decide if it's right for you.
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