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Health & Medical UnderGround >> Am I taking too many supplements?


3/22/10 9:38 AM
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Triangulo
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Edited: 03/22/10 9:39 AM
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I take 1 multivitamin (Nature's Way Alive), 1 500mg Vitamin C tablet, 1 fish oil capsule and 1 30mg COQ10 everyday. Am I taking too much? I feel energized unlike before though I don't think that's a reliable indicator if what I'm doing is good in the long run. I'm 26 years old, no serious health issues. Lift weights 2x a week and box 2x a week (recreational). Appreciate your inputs. TIA
3/22/10 10:23 AM
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WidespreadPanic
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Edited: 03/22/10 10:27 AM
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 IMO your supplements are -way- off.

You need to be taking 4-6, one gm fish oils per day, and your dose of CoQ10 is also a waste of money. Studies have been done using it on CoQ10 -deficient- patients, using doses that ranged from 60mg to 3gm (3000mg) per day. BUT, your body makes CoQ10. So, instead take the nutrients which help your body make it. (essentially the B-vitamin spectrum). There is some evidence that taking fat-soluble vitamins (and Q10) with a fatty meal improves their absorption into the bloodstream.

However, I'm a firm proponent of taking what works for you and seeing the result and charting it. So, I'd suggest stopping the CoQ10 and see if your feeling changes. If you still feel energized, then you'll save money.

I'd also suggest you take 1000-2000 IU of Vit. D3 and a Calcium supplement (D3 and Ca work together). There's fairly new research which shows D3 is low in many people who live in Northern climates, esp. during the winter.

A few key things to remember:
1. Anything you take orally will be digested in your stomach - so these 'exotic' types of supplements will be broken down into amino acids and sugars and fats before they can reach your blood stream.
2. Always try to get your vitamins in food, which contains the full range co-factors (many of which we may not be aware - the science of nutrition is still in its infancy compared to other sciences).
3. Before you take anything look up studies in pubmed.com and see what the effective doses are. Many companies will throw a bunch of cheap stuff in a vat and cook up a 'Men's Health Vitamin' and make extravagant claims when the actual content is a tiny fraction of what you need. You'd have to take almost the whole bottle (and get toxic amounts of some things) to get the amt needed of some of what they print on the label in big letters (like CoQ10, for example).
4. Always try to get bulk powders - for example your Vitamin C - don't take a 'capsule' or a 'gelatin-pill' if you can help it - they contain inert ingredients and greasers and other things added you don't need.
    
3/25/10 11:27 PM
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cdmontgo
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Edited: 03/25/10 11:27 PM
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If you lift twice a week and box twice a week at 26, you don't need any supplements. Just eat healthy.
3/26/10 10:17 AM
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WidespreadPanic
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Edited: 03/26/10 1:59 PM
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cdmontgo - If you lift twice a week and box twice a week at 26, you don't need any supplements. Just eat healthy.

Fairly uninformed comment. The need to take 'supplements' or vits is based on diet and not much on a modest workout regime. If you're doing a special diet you may need calcium, D3, fish oil, and maybe PP (for vegetarians, for example).

Also, what is 'eat healthy'? Are you aware of the decline of nutrients in food due to pesticides, storage in hot transport trucks, and use of fish farms and hormone laden meat? Why not list what you specifically think is 'eating "healthy"'?

 
3/30/10 1:20 PM
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gsx_r
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Going to second adding in a Vit-D supplement. Been taking 4000IU a day of D3 and I've noticed a positive change in about everything, most notably energy levels and mood.

Not sure what dosage your fish oil is, but I'm betting you'd be better off taking more then one.
3/30/10 3:49 PM
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cdmontgo
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WidespreadPanic - 
cdmontgo - If you lift twice a week and box twice a week at 26, you don't need any supplements. Just eat healthy.

Fairly uninformed comment. The need to take 'supplements' or vits is based on diet and not much on a modest workout regime. If you're doing a special diet you may need calcium, D3, fish oil, and maybe PP (for vegetarians, for example).

Also, what is 'eat healthy'? Are you aware of the decline of nutrients in food due to pesticides, storage in hot transport trucks, and use of fish farms and hormone laden meat? Why not list what you specifically think is 'eating "healthy"'?

 


If he is on a modest workout regime, then it isn't very difficult to get all of the nutrients which his body needs from food. He didn't mention a special diet.

By "eating healthy" I meant eating foods which provide ample amounts of protein, carbs, fats, vitamins, and minerals from good sources. An ample amount would depend on the activities which he does and the intensity of those activities. "Good sources" mostly means whole foods, as close to the source as possible. Could be organic if you so desire.

Yes, I am aware of the decline of nutrients in food due to various reasons which mostly boil down to people messing with the food supply.

I apologize for not providing detail in my response. I assume the OP can do his own research, think for himself, and determine what is healthy for him. He was asking a question about supplements, so I provided an answer about supplements.
3/31/10 9:47 PM
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chavedebraço
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That's a lot of fish oil. If I take any more than 1000mg at once without food it screws up my stomach. But I might just be a pussy that way.

Mild vitamin D deficiency is rampant, so I agree about supplementing it.

That said, it's really easy to pop a bunch of pills but the emphasis should always be on hard work at the gym and on the mats. If you eat nothing but peanut butter sandwiches and work out like Dan Gable you will get farther than the guy who eats $500/month in supplements and goes to the gym once or twice a week.
4/13/10 11:20 AM
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WidespreadPanic
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Edited: 04/13/10 11:20 AM
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Doctors are notoriously bad at giving nutritional advice - it's not taught in Med school and dieticians are among the most clueless - they still promote the old food pyramind.

On calcium and the link to prostate cancer, if you research you'll find there is literally NO link between dietary calcium intake and blood serum levels of calcium. The study in question only had 25 cases linked to higher normal serum Calcium and prostate cancer. So for the one doc to put down calcium supplements is very naive - you need some calcium for your Vit D to work.

Also, I think taking Co-Q 10 is pretty ridiculous - it's digested in the stomach. However some studies show that there may be some benefit by taking about 300mg/day for a few weeks if your serum levels are low. The substance occurs in fish and meat and your liver will make it if you have adequate B, C and Selenium. The doc does not say why they take it, or how much or for how long. They also don't say if they are exercising. Also, beware - a lot of studies with this supplement are done with rats. You also want to be sure the supplement is assayed by an independent lab to make sure it contains what it says it does.

To me, there's a tryad, exercise, good food and supplements - and your diet should not be overloading your system (i.e. eat well but sparingly).

None of those docs say how much they take, how consistent they are, the brands, if they're assayed independently, or if they exercise, or if they are normal weight or overweight. So it's pretty useless. But thanks for the link.

$0.02


 
4/13/10 5:19 PM
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Andy the man
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My supplement intake >

1 Multi vit before breakfast

3 Omega 3's (one with breakfast and the others with lunch and dinner)

1 Multi mineral after a HARD training session.

4/16/10 9:32 AM
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Triangulo
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Widespread Panic, I dropped the 30mg COQ10, didn't notice any change with regard to my energy levels. I briefly skimmed through some studies in pubmed, I gotta say it's pretty confusing man. Read some stating stuff like Vitamin C, E and so on have no beneficial effect on cancer prevention, heart disease prevention. Your thoughts ?

Appreciate all the inputs above. Thanks very much
4/16/10 1:07 PM
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WidespreadPanic
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 Tri,
It's hard to assess the Vit E and C thing. Some of the research was done on a small population, I think it might have even been with smokers. So it's a bit hard to know how applicable it is to those exercising and fairly healthy.

From what I've read you can take about 400IU of E and not have a problem. IMO, it's prob best just to eat the best you can, get your vits in real food, and not over-eat. Stick with the basic supplements, D3, Multi, Fish oil, maybe some Calcium (works with D3), protein powder, maybe creatine if you're lifting.

My feeling is you only have so much you can spend on supplements, and you want to maximize your supplement dollar. Keep researching, note what affects you for the best. As I've said in the past, I've tried a lot of things, including some stuff like bee pollen which I felt worked for me (years ago). So I did take that for a while. In addition, when my cholesterol was a little high I started taking garlic, and cayenne pepper.

To me, there are a lot of factors, co-factors with regard to health and risk - whether you smoke, your family history, your lifestyle. So the best thing is to look at your life and try to eliminate or decrease the harmful things we all do, keep researching, and journal your own experience to help you see the big picture.

HTH

11/30/10 10:12 PM
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BrockbackMountain
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Income taxes are unconstitutional!
12/5/10 6:45 PM
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hardknuckler
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Too many??

check my list:
milk thistle - 3000mg/day

fish oil - 3600mg/day

L-arginine - 3000mg/day

glucosamine - 3000mg/day

BCAA - 4000mg/day - extra 2000mg on w/o days

L-lysine - 1000mg/day

hawthorne berry - 2000mg/day

multi - one a day

potassium - 99mg/day

D-3 - 1000iu/day

ZMA as directed at night

B-6 - 100mg/day

protein powder (whey) - 100 grams/day


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