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Pros and Cons of Vitamin Supplements

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Pros and Cons of Vitamin Supplements

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        With Americans taking more vitamin supplements than ever, there becomes less distinction of the fine line between what is healthy and what is not. Forty percent of theUnited State's adults spend almost two billion dollars on pills containing vitamins and minerals, but many are not helping their bodies - in fact, they may be hurting them. The supplements are often used as a "quick-fix" or replacement for real healthy living. As a result, people are very commonly putting too much, too little, or even not the correct vitamins into their body. So what are the right vitamins? What is too much, and what is too little? The guidelines vary from person to person, dependent on such things as one's health problems, living tendencies, age, sex, and race.

        Where better to start than at the beginning of the alphabet, with vitamin A. It has many important functions in your body, such as maintaining the health of your skin and mucus linings, improving your immunity from infections, and helps eyesight when in dim light. Vitamin A can be derived from cheese, milk, oily fish, or eggs, and you should not ingest more than 1.5mg on a daily basis. Too much vitamin A can result in more easily fractured bones, and also harm the unborn baby of a pregnant woman.

        Vitamin B6 is water-soluble and serves very imperative functions in your body. It allows the body to use and store the energy found in the protein and carbohydrates eaten, and also helps hemoglobin (the substance that carries oxygen around the body) form. It can be found in pork, chicken, bread, vegetables, peanuts, and potatoes. Taking more than 200mg a day could lead the peripheral neuropathy (the loss of feeling in the arms and legs). This is often reversible once you stop taking the supplements, but if they have been taken for more than a few months, it can be permanent. The FSA does not recommend exceeding 10mg a day.

        Perhaps the most common vitamin supplement is of vitamin C,...