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Re: best vitamin

Re: best vitamin

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Posted by Bobby-t on December 01, 2000 at 14:06:56:

In Reply to: best vitamin posted by chris on November 23, 2000 at 06:20:22:

: i suffer from fatigue, insomnia and a lack of mental focus. im told vitamins could help me with this, but not all vitamins are the same, does anyone know what brand is good? I saw an infomercial one called 'comprehensive formula' which seemed interesting.... Also, how long until you start to feel the effects of vitamins?

: Thanks,
: Chris

Herbal Supplements -- Buyers Beware-(new York U.)

(U-WIRE) NEW YORK -- Selenium prevents cancer, gingko stops aging, ephedrine makes you thin and Dorothy's ruby slippers get you home to Kansas. Go into any health food store in the city and you'll find "remedies" for every ailment known to man. If so-called "miracle" nutritional supplements did everything they promised, we'd all be living over the rainbow where sickness and old age couldn't touch us.

Unfortunately, though, here in the real world, miracle cures don't really exist.

The Food and Drug Administration regulates, among other factors, the purity of over-the-counter and prescription drugs and the amount of active ingredient per dose. However, the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act, passed by Congress in 1994, states that the FDA is under no obligation to regulate vitamins and herbal supplements; manufacturers of supplements are not bound by FDA rules for purity, and they can legally make claims about the effectiveness of their products that are not substantiated by clinical research.

Recently, an herbal weight loss supplement, otherwise known as "herbal fenphen," came onto the market under several names, including Ultimate Xphoria. This same product had been banned in its prescription drug form in the early '90s for side effects such as stroke, heart attack, hepatitis, seizure and even death. Despite more than 800 reports of adverse effects and 15 deaths since 1994, this lethal stimulant remains on the market in herbal form, promising hopeful buyers quick and painless weight loss.

Ginseng is said to relieve stress, lower blood pressure improve stamina and enhance immunity. However, many products that are called "ginseng" contain little or none of the active ingredient; and since concentration is unregulated and often varies from batch to batch, they may also contain too much of the active ingredient. And clinical tests of such substances show that they produce unpredictable effects.

Echinacea and St. John's wort are two fairly safe herbal supplements, although St. John's wort -- commonly recommended for depression -- has been known to cause gastrointestinal problems, fatigue and confusion in some who take it. It may also mask symptoms of depression related to other medical problems. Despite the fact that there are no documented studies of this product's long-term use, millions continue to use it faithfully. Echinacea is an immune system booster; but continued use of the drug decreases its effect and often causes allergic reactions.

Even simple vitamin supplements are not always beneficial. A healthy adult can obtain all of the vitamins he or she needs most safely from a well-balanced diet. Extra vitamins can be detrimental to the body.

Americans spend an estimated $30 billion a year on herbal and nutritional supplements, and many supplements are valid forms of treatment and prevention. But it is up to consumers to know what they're taking. It's best to consult a doctor when thinking of taking supplements, especially to inquire about interaction with prescription medication.

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