November 6, 2004
Q: Is mega dosing on vitamins, safe? - Layperson
A: No, unless a person is already vitamin deficient due to genetics, disease states, poor diet, and so on. Vitamins are organic substances necessary for life. Vitamins are essential to the normal functioning of our bodies, and except for a few exceptions, cannot be made by our bodies.Humans need 13 vitamins to function properly. These are vitamin A, the B family of vitamins (which has 8 members: thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, B6, B12, folacin and biotin), vitamin C, vitamin, D, vitamin E, vitamin F, and vitamin K.
Vitamins are necessary for growth and vitality. They are found in all natural foods. We must obtain vitamins from foods or dietary supplements. It is impossible to sustain life without all the essential vitamins.
A water-soluble vitamin is a vitamin that dissolves in water. Vitamin C and Vitamin B are water soluble vitamins. Water-soluble vitamins cannot be stored in the body for long periods of time. Water-soluble vitamins travel through your body and whatever your body doesn't need, comes out in your urine. These kinds of vitamins need to be replaced daily.
A fat-soluble vitamin is a vitamin that can be stored in the liver and fat tissues of your body until your body needs them. Vitamins A, D, E, F, and K are fat-soluble vitamins. Fat-soluble vitamins can be stored in your body for up to six months.
The fat-soluble vitamins can be rendered water-soluble and the water-soluble vitamins can be rendered fat-soluble through a process termed micellise or micellize to make them more absorbable.
At one time, it was believed only the fat-soluble vitamins could be excessively stored in the body to toxic levels and the excess water-soluble vitamins would be excreted in the urine. The water-soluble vitamins have been found to build up to toxic levels if the body can not excrete the vitamins fast enough, such as with poorly functioning kidneys or taking such an extremely large amounts , the body simmply can not excrete the vitamin load fast enough. Large amounts of vitamins can also throw off electrolyte, enzyme, hormonal, and mineral levels in the body as well as affecting medications and lab tests a person may be using.
DISCLAIMER: The information in this column, is NOT intended to diagnose and/or treat any health related issues and is provided solely for informational purposes only. Consult the appropriate healthcare professional before making any changes to your healthcare regime. Even what may seem like simple changes in the diet for example, can interact with, and alter, the efficiency of medications and/or the body's response to the medications. Many herbs and supplements exert powerful medicinal effects. Neither the author, nor the website designers, assume any responsibility for the reader's use or misuse of this information.