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Do vitamin supplements work?

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JivviWesty
1022570.  Mon Sep 16, 2013 5:58 pm Reply with quote

Hi Elves.. I've been given some omega 3 and a multivitamin by our school rowing coach, not the sealed blister pack type but the little white tub kind, do these work, and if so how effectively? (not given for sports performance as such but to prevent colds etc etc)

I'd like them to help out skin wise, make me bloody clever and smell divine, have shiny hair, amazing vision, win all races, ace exams, land a lucrative modelling contract, win rare and exciting school customary thing, become a god among men? How much will my packet of vitamins help me? Or similarly if I were malnourished with adequate yet poor nutritional value in food available to me, how much would they help me then?

Thank you.
Jack

 
djgordy
1022595.  Tue Sep 17, 2013 2:10 am Reply with quote

JivviWesty wrote:


I'd like them to help out skin wise, make me bloody clever and smell divine, have shiny hair, amazing vision, win all races, ace exams, land a lucrative modelling contract, win rare and exciting school customary thing, become a god among men?


So, basically, you want to be like me. I can understand that.

For most people, vitamin supplements are a waste of money. You should be getting all the vitamins and minerals you need from your diet. if you're not, ditch the Maccy D and buy some fruit and veg instead.

I also don't think, to be honest, that a school coach ought to be handing out medication to students. Does this person have medical qualifications? It's totally irresponsible and unethical.


Last edited by djgordy on Tue Sep 17, 2013 2:28 am; edited 1 time in total

 
swot
1022597.  Tue Sep 17, 2013 2:21 am Reply with quote

You're right, except for vitamin D in people who live in northern Europe, people who stay indoors a great deal, and people who always cover their skin when they go outside. It's quite easy to become deficient that way. Also, pregnant/breasfeeding women are told to take supplements of vitamin D and folic acid.

 
'yorz
1022598.  Tue Sep 17, 2013 3:20 am Reply with quote

djgordy wrote:
I also don't think, to be honest, that a school coach ought to be handing out medication to students. Does this person have medical qualifications? It's totally irresponsible and unethical.

Was just wondering - was the tub still sealed? Did everybody get their own tub? Not casting asparagus, but it seems a bit odd in this day and age. djg is right (for a change) - buy your own fruit 'n veg.

 
dr.bob
1022610.  Tue Sep 17, 2013 4:52 am Reply with quote

JivviWesty wrote:
Hi Elves.. I've been given some omega 3 and a multivitamin by our school rowing coach, not the sealed blister pack type but the little white tub kind, do these work, and if so how effectively?


For more info about omega 3 and multivitamin supplements, I'd thoroughly recommend reading Ben Goldacre's excellent blog "Bad Science".

For Omega 3 studies, read this posting and this posting.

The articles about vitamins are more scattered, as "vitamins" covers quite a wide range of snake oil up to the extreme end of the spectrum where a businessman named Matthias Rath is making a fortune convincing people in the South African government that his vitamin pills are a better treatment for AIDS than traditional anti-virals.

Probably worth reading are this posting and this Grauniad article.

 
swot
1022624.  Tue Sep 17, 2013 6:10 am Reply with quote

If you're deficient in a vitamin/mineral, you'll probably start to feel ill at some point and your GP may send you for a blood test. A deficiency will show up in the results. That's how I ended up on my most recent supplements (vitamin D* and iron).


*although that wasn't causing me to feel ill. We never figured that one out

 
RLDavies
1022645.  Tue Sep 17, 2013 7:56 am Reply with quote

For most people eating a typical Western diet, it's a reasonable idea to take a standard multivitamin/mineral and an omega-3 supplement as a "just in case" backup to fill in any gaps. You can be ingesting less than optimum levels without being clinically deficient.

Having said that, I'd look askance at any non-doctor thrusting a pot of pills at me and saying "eat these". Advising you to take a daily vitamin is one thing, that's another.

 
chrisboote
1022687.  Tue Sep 17, 2013 10:08 am Reply with quote

And unless you know FOR CERTAIN the coating on those pills, you might well be ingesting Nandrolone without knowing it

http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=97463&page=1

 
suze
1022722.  Tue Sep 17, 2013 11:06 am Reply with quote

It won't help you pass exams and you'll feel rather silly while you're doing it ...but if shiny hair is all you want, wash your hair with mayonnaise.

Seriously - although don't quote me on this if your folks wonder what happened to the jar of super-expensive artisan organic mayonnaise that was in the fridge! (Organic mayonnaise is said to be best for this, although Hellman's works. Heinz Salad Cream doesn't, and you'd look extremely silly pouring that onto your head.)

Put the mayonnaise into your hair when it's dry, and then wrap your hair up (use a swimming cap if you have one, although a plastic carrier bag works just as well). Leave it for an hour or so, and then wash your hair with shampoo in the normal way.

 
dr.bob
1022872.  Wed Sep 18, 2013 4:02 am Reply with quote

RLDavies wrote:
For most people eating a typical Western diet, it's a reasonable idea to take a standard multivitamin/mineral and an omega-3 supplement as a "just in case" backup to fill in any gaps.


Multivitamins and minerals I could maybe understand (though, as pointed out above, most normal diets will provide plenty and deficiencies are mostly easy to spot).

But what on earth would be the justification of taking omega-3 supplements. Very few people in this country have a deficiency of fatty acids in their diets. In fact, we're constantly being told to cut down on such things. Since there is no convincing evidence that omega-3 has any beneficial effects on your brain, I fail to see any reason why people should waste their money on such nonsense.

 
chrisboote
1022876.  Wed Sep 18, 2013 4:15 am Reply with quote

Warning: Empirical evidence only

I tried Modafinil/Provigil in the run up to going on Mastermind
I followed the instructions exactly, taking it at the same time each day (one hour before 'studying') with a pint of cold water, and not taking any dairy products for an hour beforehand

I stayed on this for the full six weeks in the packet

1) It was DEFINITELY easier to remember things short term - I could read a story from my specialised subject, and be able to quote huge chunks of it the next day
2) I needed less sleep. Now, I normally only sleep 5 hours/night anyway, and maybe the stress/excitement of going on MM compounded this, but I was going to bed at 1:00 as normal, but waking at 4:30 or 5:00 instead of 6:00
3) I ate less. Quite a lot less. I lost 3-and-a-bit kilos in the six weeks (but see the stress/excitement in 2 above)
4) I was grumpier, less tolerant with fools, snappier, more caustic
When I stopped taking it, people who did not know I was taking it commented that I was back to my normal sunny self (again, see 2)
5) It had absolutely NO EFFECT on my long term memory. I took various LT memory tests before, during, after. The variation in results was lower than the margin of error

So all in all. I would say it was 60 wasted
YMMV

 
JivviWesty
1023021.  Wed Sep 18, 2013 12:35 pm Reply with quote

djgordy wrote:
JivviWesty wrote:


I'd like them to help out skin wise, make me bloody clever and smell divine, have shiny hair, amazing vision, win all races, ace exams, land a lucrative modelling contract, win rare and exciting school customary thing, become a god among men?


So, basically, you want to be like me. I can understand that.

For most people, vitamin supplements are a waste of money. You should be getting all the vitamins and minerals you need from your diet. if you're not, ditch the Maccy D and buy some fruit and veg instead.

I also don't think, to be honest, that a school coach ought to be handing out medication to students. Does this person have medical qualifications? It's totally irresponsible and unethical.


sorry yes :) should have mentioned that, sort of in that I got them officially from the nurse. We've all had colds. (rowing crew) and I do YES of course.

 
JivviWesty
1023025.  Wed Sep 18, 2013 12:38 pm Reply with quote

suze wrote:
It won't help you pass exams and you'll feel rather silly while you're doing it ...but if shiny hair is all you want, wash your hair with mayonnaise.

Seriously - although don't quote me on this if your folks wonder what happened to the jar of super-expensive artisan organic mayonnaise that was in the fridge! (Organic mayonnaise is said to be best for this, although Hellman's works. Heinz Salad Cream doesn't, and you'd look extremely silly pouring that onto your head.)

Put the mayonnaise into your hair when it's dry, and then wrap your hair up (use a swimming cap if you have one, although a plastic carrier bag works just as well). Leave it for an hour or so, and then wash your hair with shampoo in the normal way.


This seems a better plan, of course it does! :)

 
JivviWesty
1023027.  Wed Sep 18, 2013 12:40 pm Reply with quote

chrisboote wrote:
Warning: Empirical evidence only

I tried Modafinil/Provigil in the run up to going on Mastermind
I followed the instructions exactly, taking it at the same time each day (one hour before 'studying') with a pint of cold water, and not taking any dairy products for an hour beforehand

I stayed on this for the full six weeks in the packet

1) It was DEFINITELY easier to remember things short term - I could read a story from my specialised subject, and be able to quote huge chunks of it the next day
2) I needed less sleep. Now, I normally only sleep 5 hours/night anyway, and maybe the stress/excitement of going on MM compounded this, but I was going to bed at 1:00 as normal, but waking at 4:30 or 5:00 instead of 6:00
3) I ate less. Quite a lot less. I lost 3-and-a-bit kilos in the six weeks (but see the stress/excitement in 2 above)
4) I was grumpier, less tolerant with fools, snappier, more caustic
When I stopped taking it, people who did not know I was taking it commented that I was back to my normal sunny self (again, see 2)
5) It had absolutely NO EFFECT on my long term memory. I took various LT memory tests before, during, after. The variation in results was lower than the margin of error

So all in all. I would say it was 60 wasted
YMMV



YOU'VE BEEN ON MASTERMIND!!!!!!!! :) It looks like I'm getting the answers I expected. :)

 
JivviWesty
1023030.  Wed Sep 18, 2013 12:43 pm Reply with quote

'yorz wrote:
djgordy wrote:
I also don't think, to be honest, that a school coach ought to be handing out medication to students. Does this person have medical qualifications? It's totally irresponsible and unethical.

Was just wondering - was the tub still sealed? Did everybody get their own tub? Not casting asparagus, but it seems a bit odd in this day and age. djg is right (for a change) - buy your own fruit 'n veg.


I'm getting paranoid now..... ha no, sealed yes... DID seem strange to me though as I thought vitamins were pointless really unless you need a particular one like Swot has said with D.

 

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