If you take a multi vitamin and mineral that you buy in regular stores there is no risk you get to much of any vitamin or mineral when you take a multi. Natural substances have a large “tolerance window”, meaning that the body doesn’t mind getting rid of some or store some. The vitamins A, D, E, K are dissolved in fat so make sure you take them when you eat, preferably vitamins in the morning as they are mainly used during metabolism, i.e. during the day when we eat. Minerals are important for hormone production and is good to take before sleep as a lot of the hormone production is done during sleep.
If you can find a product which separates the vitamins and minerals that is better, as the cells have receptors to pick them up one by one. It’s like a hand on the outside of the cell that picks up substances that match, and brings them into the cell where they can do the job, as the picture shows. Certain receptors can only pick up certain molecules, and they don’t have one receptor for each substance we need, it just wouldn’t fit on the cell membrane. So the clever system is that some vitamins have the same receptor as some minerals and other things we need, so called antagonist. That’s why it is good if you find a separated product to take at separate times, so that the cell receptors have a chance to get vitamins in the morning and minerals at night. But don’t worry, if you can’t find such a product your body will pick up the ones it needs the most.
On the contrary if it is a chemical substance like medicine, the body will treat it as a toxic. The “allowance window” for these chemicals is very small, so the body rejects it considering it a toxin, and then you don’t get any effect. Or you take too much and you get unwanted secondary effects. This is why there are so many trials before launch of a medicine, to find the exact amount that doesn’t harm us but still has an effect. The most common “test person” in these trials are young men, in need of money. Usually the pharmaceuticals don’t want young women in the trials. It’s to risky if they get pregnant while testing a new drug. That’s one of the reasons why 90% of the medicine subscribed to women are never tested on women. It could be one of the reasons why women die much more of heart disease then men, as it is a typical disease that differ a lot in-between the gender so the doctors can’t diagnose it with given methods and rules (see my blog and TED-talk from 8th of March, 2014).
Back to supplements and why you don’t need to worry that you would get to much vitamins or minerals from products you buy in stores. They are regulated so that they can only contain a certain amount of each substance compared with RDA. Unfortunately! RDA is nothing but a minimum set in the beginning of the 1900’s, starting in the U.S. when immigrants arrived after 3 months totally undernourished on a ship. It was decided to avoid deficiency disease from starvation, like scurvy or rickets. Today we need the right amounts for optimum health, in order to avoid our most common diseases like cancer, heart attack and arthritis. RDA is ridiculously low having in mind what we need in our environment causing this huge amount of stress and constant oxidation in our bodies. Authorities know this very well.
I have been asked how much of each vitamin and mineral to take. Now, once again, it all depends on what product I find. But I try to make sure I get some specific substances, so I check those and their amounts and I take what ever else they offer in that multi-vitamin/mineral – remember the more the better! To give you an indication, here is what we at Olive and our families take daily, of vitamins and minerals as adults (half of this for kids up to 50 kg’s) in it’s natural plant form where applicable…of course! If I would have a disease I would take much higher amounts depending on the disease as I have higher oxidation in my body. If I have a cold (can’t remember last time I did) I would double the intake for a few days. This is what I usually check in a product: 100 mcg of selenium, 12 mg of magnesium, 60 mgr of vitamin E, 20 mcgr of vitamin B12, 500 IU of vitamin D3, all the B vitamins and at least 800 mg of vitamin C. If the product has this, is a capsule and shows the biochemical form, I’m fairly sure it’s a good one.
I won’t give you a brand, sorry! Don’t keep asking. Just like I won’t give you a daily menu. I much rather prefer that you learn, read and check it out yourself. Use google and find out. It is as important as your food, so bring your glasses when you go shopping and get in the habit of reading labels. Once you know a good brand you don’t need to put more time into that for a while. And then try it! If the product is good and you haven’t taken supplements before (or bad ones) you will have detox symptoms. They can vary from headache, changed stool and urine, pain in joints, smelly transpiration. If these detox symptoms are to severe, take half a dose, and then step it up. Normally it lasts about 2 weeks. Then you will start feeling more energized. It might take a few months to find what suits you. Let us know how you are doing. And No! You can’t pop a vitamin and continue eating crap!
Good Luck! 🙂