Saturday, June 18, 2011

Multivitamins: expensive urine...

"Many multivitamins don't have nutrients claimed in label Out of 38 tested, 13 had too much or too little of the ingredients listed or were improperly labelled"

That was the headline taken from an article on MSNBC yesterday. When I saw it, I had to start chuckling  because I have spent weeks trying to figure the angle from which I would approach this particular blog post.

We all are different, no two persons are exactly the same, we all know this and this needs to be taken into account for everything, including your nutritional status. 

During a consultation sessions with a new client, a number of things need to be recorded and analysed called the A.B.C.D.O of nutritional analyses. These are: 

Anthropometric data (height, weight,waist to hip ratio e.t.c)

Biochemical data (cholesterol, glucose levels, Hb etc.)

Clinical data, (diabetes, cancer, aids, asthma, bipolar disorder, anemia)

Dietary information Ieating patterns, habits, content and size of meals)  

and any Other data that would be relevant to your nutritional status for example your stress levels, financial situation, family medical history structure and support system. 
You see, your nutritional status is affected by many things, not just what you put in your mouth. 

I am alarmed at the false state of security individuals have re their nutritional status, which are provided to them based on the claims of a company they know nothing about or a product that could not possibly deliver on its claims. 

Individuals at all ages have different nutrient needs, for example, adolescent females  need more calcium as this is the time of their lives in which they will reach their maximum bone density, after this period we are simply trying to maintain the integrity of our bones. Another woman in another stage of life will need another nutrient more than the other. 
How can one pill be providing all of these nutrients to everyone in the correct amounts? It cannot. Everyone has different requirements based on a multitude of reasons, multivitamins cannot address these needs sufficiently.

How do these multivitamins work?

One brand of multivitamin claims to provide Vitamins A to Zinc. Are you aware of the many nutrient-nutrient interactions that take place when we eat food? Vitamin C for example aids in the absorption of Iron, while calcium prevents it  from being absorbed. How can this pill provide all three? It would stand to reason one of these nutrients will be compromised and not have any use to the body. 

How bio-available are these vitamins? All forms of nutrients are not created equal, not all forms can be absorbed readily by the body, so not because a product is marketed correctly as an iron supplement means that this form of  Iron will have any use at all to your body.

What about the other substances in food that have not been discovered as yet that have unparalleled positive effects on the body? That cannot be manufactured. 
In short a balanced diet is the only sure way to ensure a healthful nutritional status.

The above mentioned article states: 
"While medications are closely overseen by the federal Food and Drug Administration, supplements like vitamins don’t get regular testing by any government agency. So there’s no way of knowing — outside of independent testing — whether a bottle of supplements contains what it’s supposed to."

Anyone can simply put something together and call it a diet or nutrition supplement and not only are they legally able to do so, but gullible individuals on their quest to being healthy will buy in abundance. This is the case with all nutrition supplements. No claims have been tested and the facts are coming from the marketers of the product. Do not believe everything you hear or see. Their claims are just that, claims.

There are instances where individuals actually need supplements, such as the expectant mother in this case supplements are actually prescribed by a medical professional. 
The main point of this article is we need to be more aware of the facts, in order to be food savvy. 

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