Vitamins, Supplements and Poison Center Calls

Vitamins and supplements are part of millions of people’s lives including young and old. In fact, it’s been estimated that more people take them now than those who do not. However, the safety, efficacy and effectiveness of those drugs are not always known because they are not regulated. No government oversight into their effectiveness or quality. No Food and Drug Administration (FDA) involvement like there is with prescription drugs. No wonder why it’s a $30 billion a year industry in the U.S. and it’s only expected to grow substantially over the course of the next decade.

As you may already know, I am not an advocate for taking any vitamins or supplements, unless directed by your personal physician for a specific medical condition. Even then, I worry about the safety. Good reason, according to new research where researchers found that because of those supplements, there’s also a rise in poison center calls by a whopping 49.3 percent increase!

From 2005 to 2012, the rate of supplement-related calls to poison centers exploded, taking in calls at a rate of nearly 10 in every 100,000. The number of adults taking supplements has held steady at about 49 to 54 percent reporting use of them. But because of the lack of federal oversight by the FDA, it has led to inconsistencies in the quality of dietary supplements, product mislabeling and contamination with other substances.

The most dangerous types of dietary supplements have been found to be with energy products, botanicals and cultural medicines. Energy drinks can cause a plethora of problems such as abnormal heart rhythms and breathing, as well as seizures.The study was published in the Journal of Medical Toxicology.

If you ask me, I would tell you to stop wasting your money and jeopardizing your health. Whole foods provide much better resources for the vitamins, minerals and nutrients your body needs. You do not need to risk your health and safety for a quick fix with taking a vitamin or supplement.