(ARA) - Most people know taking vitamins and minerals is good for their health. But did you know that there are more than 20,000 studies in the National Library of Medicine showing the increased health benefits of vitamins and some essential minerals at higher levels than the U.S. government Recommended Daily Allowances (RDAs)?
To understand why the newer dosage levels of vitamins and essential minerals, called optimal doses, are higher than the RDAs, we need to look back in time to how supplements became part of our diet.
In the 1940s, the U.S. government first established recommended daily allowances for vitamins and essential minerals. These RDAs were established to ensure people would get enough vitamins and essential minerals to protect themselves from the earliest known deficiency diseases, scurvy, pellagra and rickets. It was the first step in establishing suggested doses for overall health protection.
RDAs, also called Daily Values or Reference Daily Intakes, were very useful guidelines that raised our awareness that vitamins and essential minerals could play an important role in our health. However, they were guidelines based on the best information available 60 years ago, and they were applied to everyone, irrespective of age, gender or stress level. Now there is better information available.
Today we know that people are different and, within healthful ranges, have differing needs for vitamins and essential minerals, not only because of genetics but because of the increasing stresses in our fast-paced lifestyles.
New technology, more researchers and advanced computers have dramatically increased the rate of research in preventative health since the 1940s. There are now over 20,000 studies available about the beneficial effects of higher doses of vitamins and essential minerals.
As it turns out, the RDAs were a good starting point, but the 60 years of research since the RDAs were first established has shown that the more effective doses of vitamins and essential minerals are often significantly higher than RDAs. Below are examples of what researchers have discovered about optimal doses for vitamins and essential minerals.
Vitamin C and Better Bone Density
A study in 2001 found that senior women who took between 1,000 and and 5,000 milligrams of Vitamin C per day had five percent greater bone density than women who took 500 milligrams or less per day over three years.
Vitamin C -- Higher Doses Reduced the Duration of Colds
A 1995 study found that although Vitamin C doses of 250 to 500 milligrams per day produced no effect on reduction of cold symptoms, doses from 1,000 to 6,000 milligrams per day decreased cold durations an average of 21 percent.
Vitamin E -- Higher Doses Reduce “Bad” Cholesterol Oxidation
A placebo-controlled study also done in 1995, found that Vitamin E, when taken at low doses, between 60 and 200 international units (IU) -- both higher doses than the RDA of 30 mg -- had no effect on reducing the oxidation of LDL cholesterol that precedes cholesterol plaque formation in the arteries. However, as the doses increased to 400 IU, 800 IU and 1,200 IU, there was an increasingly stronger effect on reducing the oxidation of LDL cholesterol in the blood stream.
Folic Acid -- For Healthier Babies
Folic acid -- mostly found in green leafy vegetables, certain grains and orange juice -- is critical to the diets of women in early pregnancy to lower the risk of spinal birth defects in their babies. The National Academy of Science recommends that all women who are planning to become pregnant begin taking 400 micrograms of supplemental folic acid daily even before they are pregnant to ensure they have enough folic acid in the most critical early days of their pregnancy. And in line with what we now know about optimal doses, higher doses of folic acid lower the risk even further.
Calcium -- Bone Health
Published medical journal studies show that if you eat the average American diet that provides approximately 600 milligrams of food calcium per day, low supplemental calcium doses, such as 100 milligrams per day -- regardless of the form of calcium -- are not effective for protecting against bone loss. You need more calcium.
In fact, scientific studies demonstrate that a minimum dose of approximately 1,000 milligrams of supplemental calcium per day is required to support bone health and bone maintenance in adults, and even more -- 1,300 to 1,700 milligrams of supplemental calcium -- is required for seniors, 65 years or older.
High Dose Vitamin Therapies and Protection Against Genetic Diseases
Noted nutrient researcher and one of the world’s most respected cell biologists, Bruce Ames, Ph.D., of the University of California at Berkeley, published a study that found higher than RDA doses helps protect against many genetic defects. “High dose vitamin therapies have been efficacious in ameliorating about 50 genetic diseases . . .” said Ames.
“RDAs have not kept pace with the science. Many years of research have shown that the typical RDA dosage is just enough to keep people from experiencing “classic” nutrient deficiency diseases,” said Michael Mooney, cofounder of SuperNutrition, a research-based vitamin company.
A lack of Vitamin B1 can cause rickets, a lack of Vitamin B3 can cause pellagra, and a person lacking in Vitamin C runs the risk of getting scurvy. There is growing recognition in the scientific and medical community that the RDA doses for many nutrients are just not high enough to support optimum health or long-term well being in today’s fast paced world. This recognition is based not only on university and medical studies, but also on studies sponsored by the U.S. Government’s Department of Agriculture.”
The research behind these studies has driven the formulation of SuperNutrition multi-vitamins. “Our customers have been experiencing the benefits of optimal potencies for over 25 years,” says Mooney. “Many other vitamin companies are doing similar product development and as a result, the consumer now has far more choices in multi-vitamins for their optimal health. SuperNutrition has designed optimal potency multi-vitamins for women, including prenatal and menopausal women, as well as for men, and children.”
For more information about SuperNutrition multi-vitamins and free copies of SuperNutrition’s Fact Vs Fiction reports on “Vitamin & Mineral Doses -- Safety & Effectiveness” and “The Truth About Calcium,” call (800) 262-2116, or visit www.supernutritionusa.com.
Courtesy of ARA Content