This is a multi-billion dollar industry. We're talking $20 billion dollars easily on just "weight loss" supplements and another $7.5 billion on "vitamins".
I can’t tell you how many patients come in and say that they’d rather take supplements and vitamins than take prescription medications that we prescribe them. That is the battle that we face every day.
In fact, $34 billion dollars spent annually on complementary and alternative medicine (chiropractic, massuese, supplements, herbal, accupuncture, vitamins, and others). That's more than is spent on traditional medicine that a physician provides.
Based on the standard American diet, very few of us are deficient in anything. We get all the vitamins, minerals, and calories we ever need. Any additional supplements are just going to be urinated out. You are paying for expensive urine.
Back in the late 1800 and early 1900, there were a lot of diseases associated with vitamin deficiencies. Rickets, Pellagra, and a number of other diseases. That's where the concept of taking a daily multivitamin pill came from. Today, very few Americans are deficient in anything. Unfortunately, if you take a multivitamin daily, and think it's a substitute for proper eating, you are dead wrong. Multivitamin pills contain only a few substances, maybe 20 at the most. When you eat a fruit or a vegetable, you are eating a product that contains hundreds of useful substances, not just a handful. You may be doing more harm than good by thinking that taking a pill is a substitute for eating right. Eat right and stop buying pills.
Further, evidence is mounting that most multivitamins and pills don't contain much of the substances that they say they contain. Make sure you check with independant testing laboratories to confirm that what you are buying really has what it says it has in it.
There are no supplements that “boost your immune system”. That isn’t possible. Be careful what you decide to take. While antioxidants are useful when you eat them in their naturally occurring state (like nuts, fruits, and vegetables), they have been found to be useless in pill form. In fact one antioxidant, vitamin E, has been shown to be harmful if taken as a pill. There was increased incidence of cardiovascular disease and death.
If you really believe in supplements, don’t overdo it. Many of these are very toxic when you take too much. If you must, one multivitamin pill per day is usually sufficient. In the next few pages you will read about the only supplements that you will ever need.
Save your money!