Can I Take Multiple Vitamins Safely?

Vitamins are essential for our health and wellbeing, but can taking multiple vitamins at once be beneficial or harmful? The answer is not always straightforward, as it depends on the type of vitamins and the dosage. Taking too much of the same type of vitamin can cause numerous side effects, while combining several supplements or taking higher doses than recommended may increase the risk that they will actually cause harm. Fortunately, there are no harmful side effects from taking multiple vitamins in moderation. Vitamin C is an antioxidant essential for the health of the immune system, while Vitamin B-12 helps maintain the nervous system and form red blood cells.

Studies show that taking these two supplements at the same time can reduce the amount of Vitamin B-12 you receive, so experts recommend taking them at least two hours apart. The combination of supplements does not normally interfere with their functioning and, in some cases, may be beneficial. For example, Vitamin C helps the absorption of iron. Opinions about gummy vitamins are varied; a study found that people who take Vitamin D in the form of a gum get more from it than from a tablet.

However, gummies can have a lot of sugar and calories, and not all brands contain all the essential vitamins and minerals. But just because supplements are safe in moderation doesn't mean that more is better. Combining several supplements or taking higher doses than recommended may increase the risk that they will actually cause harm. In addition, since the industry is not well regulated, there is no real guarantee that the ingredients and dosage that appear on the label are accurate.

You should never take more than one vitamin of the same type at a time, unless directed by a doctor. Symptoms of a vitamin overdose include cloudy urine, frequent urination, eye irritation, chapped lips, increased sensitivity to light, fast or irregular heartbeat, muscle weakness or pain, joint pain, seizures, headaches, fatigue, fainting, confusion, mental or mood changes, flushing, itching, sun tenderness, hair loss, yellow-orange skin, loss of appetite, gastrointestinal problems and weight loss. If you are already taking a multivitamin supplement, make sure that taking an additional supplement does not exceed the recommended dose of any of the vitamins or minerals. Take each vitamin according to the instructions on the label unless your doctor has told you otherwise.

Dr. Bailey says that each nutrient has different warning signs; however, the Office of Dietary Supplements has some pretty surprising fact sheets that describe everything in great detail. Learn more about the benefits of getting vitamins from food versus supplements and natural versus synthetic vitamins. Many people are able to meet their recommended daily vitamin intake through their diet so there may be no need to take vitamin supplements at all. Being aware of what you're putting into your body is not only good advice when it comes to food but it also applies to your vitamin regimen. Once you know what you need most, the next logical step is to add vitamin supplements to your daily routine. Dr.

Airey says that “it's simply not efficient to take them together since the body's ability to absorb vitamins will be reduced if taken together”. She tells her patients that if they choose to take a multivitamin they should look for one that does not exceed 100% of the daily value of any nutrient and not spend a lot of money. Erin Stokes recommends not taking magnesium at the same time as your multivitamin as it can interfere with the absorption of smaller minerals found in the multivitamin such as iron and zinc. If you take a traditional anticoagulant such as warfarin only the small amount of Vitamin K contained in an MVM can lower its concentration. While most people won't experience any side effects from vitamin supplements some people will experience a sensitivity or allergic reaction to an ingredient in the supplement. Make sure that taking the supplement does not exceed the daily vitamin limit suggested by your doctor. Kitchin takes a daily multivitamin but actually only takes half a dose (one pill instead of two servings).

He also recommends calcium and Vitamin D supplements to some of his patients who are at risk of osteoporosis but he always analyzes their diet first before prescribing them. To get the most out of these benefits you may be thinking about taking several types of vitamins at once but make sure you do so safely and responsibly.

Ben Liebhardt
Ben Liebhardt

Amateur travel fanatic. General web buff. Certified travel junkie. Twitter nerd. Infuriatingly humble web practitioner. Certified beer nerd.

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