Oh, the amazing synchronicity! I plan to do a post a vitamins and what happens: Kellene does a related on PreparednessPro on how she treats the common cold (http://www.preparednesspro.com/blog/my-cure-for-the-common-cold/?utm_source=%40everythingprep&utm_medium=twitter&utm_campaign=%40everythingprep) and Dr. Andrew Weil does Vitamin D again at http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/QAA400732/How-Much-Sun-Exposure-for-Vitamin-D.html.
Not exactly an original idea, eh?
So far in the Life Wellness posts here I've talked about eating, exercising, stress, etc, but haven't talked about supplements.
There's a reason for this - I'm of several minds about them.
I mean, let's face it: whether humans evolved or were created overnight by some Goddess or God, neither evolution nor the Divinity/Divinities in question provided a jar of prepared daily vitamins. We do not come with Recommended Daily Values for them tattoo'd onto us. But somehow humanity survived until vitamins were 'discovered' and until recommended values were established.
Therefore, given the wide ranges of habitats humans have thrived in on Earth, there is probably a wide range of 'optimum level' of each vitamin. And some interact in interesting ways, requiring more of others or masking deficiencies of others.
AND research keeps changing the idea of how much is the right amount - see a previous post on Vitamin D from .... sometime last year. And we'll get to that again later this post, too.
Still, even with eating 'better' than I have been, eating more 'intact' or 'whole' foods, etc, I take supplemental vitamins.
First, because my life is far far FAR more sedentary than my ancestors' lives were. Thus instead of needing up to 5000 calories a day (estimated calories a hard working peasant in Europe ate when they could get it), I only need like 1200 calories a day unless I push myself to exercise. That means a whole heck of a lot more nutrients would have to be crammed into a quarter of the calories.
Second, because some studies show that today's food in fact has LESS nutrients than previous varieties had.
Third, because my lifestyle doesn't expose me to the same levels of some vitamins as my ancestors were exposed to, particularly in the case of vitamin D, but probably in the case of vitamin K as well. I'm not working outside all day, I'm not walking where ever I go, etc.
But it's still frustrating. The article by Dr. Weil I cited above seems to rather contradict his previous articles on it (such as http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/QAA400732/How-Much-Sun-Exposure-for-Vitamin-D.html). In today's he says that it's easy to get all the vitamin D you need in a little sun exposure. In the earlier one, he says that he's increased the amount in his proprietary for-sale vitamins to 2000 IUs a day.
So, for the moment, I take a daily vitamin (usually one aimed at women over 50 for the extra calcium and such), and extra vitamin D, and some chewable calcium daily.