What happens when you take too many vitamins?
It is a true fact that a healthy diet, exercise and vitamins, are all essential to optimal health and longevity. The food and beverage industry have gone through lengthy measures to fortify our foods with extra nutrients to keep up with the health-conscious movement. The supplement industry has taken off exponentially over the past decade to support the surge of a healthy lifestyle as well.
Everybody wants to be healthy but is there such thing as taking too many vitamins? Is there some sort of limit and is an overdose on vitamins even possible?
In this article we will discuss what happens when you take too many vitamins and the effects it can impose.
Can you take too much vitamins?
Let’s start off by saying that vitamins are naturally occurring substances in the body that our cells need in order to sustain our lives. If we are experiencing a severe vitamin deficiency in iron for example, then taking iron over and above its recommended daily intake would prove beneficial. Up until the deficiency has balanced itself out, use should be discontinued and the whole process should be under the supervision of a health care practitioner. If we continue mega dosing on iron on our own, we could begin experiencing toxicity symptoms like joint and abdominal pain, or even hair loss and impotence.
An overdose on vitamin C can causes diarrhea and even though we were taught that we need lots of calcium for strong bones, too much can overwork the kidneys, cause severe dehydration and mood imbalances.
The quick answer to this multi layered question is yes, we can take too many vitamins and overdosing can have some serious side effects.
Balance is key in all things, but how do we know when enough is enough for the day?
Know your Limits
It’s highly unlikely that we will overdose on fortified foods and beverages, so no need to worry about that. Likewise, if we are taking a multivitamin, the nutrient content per dose is minimal and widespread, so chances of overdose are also highly unlikely as well (although possible). As it pertains to vitamins, the smart thing to do is check the label, know how much of a vitamin you are putting into your body and have a general idea of how much you need based on your gender, age and current diet. Some vitamins like our Noo-tropics multivitamins are gender specific, which helps to eliminate the guessing game and the need for additional supplementation.
Understanding the Vitamin
There are two different types of vitamins, water and fat soluble. Although both will have mega dose symptoms, fat soluble vitamins are the ones you need to be more mindful of. Fat soluble vitamins include vitamin A, D. E and K. They are not excreted from the body like water soluble vitamins. Instead, they get cozy in the liver and fatty tissue, making it almost impossible to eliminate and easier to accumulate in the body.
If the recommended daily intake of vitamin A is exceeded for example, it can cause headache, nausea, dizziness and even death in serious cases of a mega overdose.
For a water-soluble vitamin on the other hand, extreme detrimental effects are not as likely because the body will pass any excess amounts through the urine (hence the bright yellow color of our urine when we take some vitamins). With that being said, mega doses can still pose some uncomfortable symptoms. Minerals are also stored in the body, similar to fat soluble vitamins, and will pose toxicity reactions when intake supersedes what the body needs.
Can you overdose on Gummy Vitamins?
Let’s face it, gummy vitamins taste just like gummy candy and its pretty easy to get carried away. I think its makers were well aware of this, which is why gummy vitamins have the least amount of nutrients per piece. This is great to know because it makes overdosing quite difficult for children as it pertains to kids gummies (especially under adult supervision). Adult gummies are also the same, containing a very small number of vitamins per dose in comparison to a capsule or soft gel, so overdose is unlikely and uncommon.
All in all, there is such a thing as having too many vitamins. A rule of thumb to keep in mind is that too much of any one-thing is never good, always strive for balance and consult a health practitioner when unsure about what vitamin and corresponding dosage is right for you. Here are at Noo-tropics, we ensure that our multivitamin and vitamins are well balanced to provide noticeable health benefits without the need for additional supplements. Take care of your health with a healthy balance of whole foods, exercise, water and vitamins.