Stop the FDA from blocking your access to Vitamins and Minerals!

There is an issue before the FDA, (Food and Drug administration) which if passed could prevent your access to vitamins and minerals.
The basic push behind the FDA’s proposed actions is the thought that if you take too many vitamins and minerals, you could poison yourself.

There is a thread of truth to this, but how many people have you known who have gotten sick or died from taking too many vitamins? The only story I know of about this is when a bunch of arctic explorers ate polar bear livers they overdosed on the vitamins inside 100 years ago.

I myself have found more benifit to the vitamins I have taken than to all of the advice that I have recieved myself from drug companies over the years. For me, simply taking a good quality general multivitamin and mineral has made a huge difference over the years with many, many health issues. I also sleep better!
My understanding of this, is that if it passes then vitamins and minerals will be considered toxins, and our ability to purchase them will be greatly limited compared to what it is now, without a doctors prescriptions.

Now if you need a doctors prescription to buy them, where do you think you will have to go to buy them? Who would provide drug stores with the prescription vitamins?

So who do you think is behind this whole thing?

There is only a few weeks left to stop the FDA from aproving this.

Go here first and read

and then when you are ready to sign the petition go here.
Like anything, before you act on anything above do your own research and make your own decisions. Ask your doctor or chiropractor for advice before embarking on a vitamin regime.

13 Comments

  1. Harriet Hall

    Your ignorance is showing. The Codex is advisory, not regulatory, and is not going to interfere with access to vitamins. Everything is a toxin in high enough doses; you can poison yourself and die by drinking too much water, like that woman in the radio contest. If the only vitamin overdose you know of is the polar bear liver story, that just shows you have not read the medical literature. It abounds with reports of effects from excess vitamins. You might try checking PubMed. Every vitamin and mineral has been shown to have toxic effects in high enough doses. The public has the right to know that information.

  2. Elio Spinello

    There are a quite a few reported cases of adverse effects related to ingesting toxic levels of vitamins, particularly vitamins A and B3. Pretty much any substance can be toxic when taken in high enough doses. Also, I don’t believe that your understanding of Codex is entirely correct. DSHEA already ensures the availability of nutritional supplements. Codex exists to establish international guidelines for consumption based on the scientific evidence.

  3. Andrew King

    There is no proposal before the FDA to ban over the counter sales of vitamins and minerals.

    Therefore I don’t understand your falsely trying to scare consumers.

    Who is behind this effort?

  4. dk

    O.K. guys, I will bite. If vitamins and minerals in this country are so dangerous can you provide statistics showing how many people die from vitamins and minerals in the U.S. each year. A comparison to deaths from pharma drugs over the counter, or prescription would also be appreciated. In 15 years of practice, I have never seen a patient who stated that they ever had a negative reaction to a vitamin or mineral. It may take place, but I would like to see some statistics from a reliable source.

    I look forward to the responses!
    dk

  5. That’s pretty scary if this thing passes. I have never heard of someone dying from vitamins and like you, I’m waiting for someone to come forward with evidence!

  6. dk

    I agree Maria, terrifying!

  7. Elio Spinello

    My point was not that the number of people dying from vitamins compares to other causes. I was simply countering your statement where you asked, “how many people have you known who have gotten sick or died from taking too many vitamins?” You seem to be now elevating the issue.

    Before I provide evidence that vitamin toxicity from overconsumption does result in tangible injury, I would like to point out that the proposed FDA changes do not limit the availability of vitamins or the public’s ability to purchase them. It simply sets international consumption guidelines to prevent injury. The only thing scary to mee are the scare tactics being used to attack a legitimate public health policy.

    Here are a number of Medline references to support the potential problems associated with overconsumption of vitamins (there are many, many more where these came from):

    CastaƱo G ; Etchart C ; Sookoian S
    Affiliation: Department of Internal Medicine, Hospital J.M. Penna, Buenos Aires, Argentina. castano@intramed.net
    Title: Vitamin A toxicity in a physical culturist patient: a case report and review of the literature.
    Source: Annals of hepatology : official journal of the Mexican Association of Hepatology (Ann Hepatol) 2006 Oct-Dec; 5(4): 293-395

    Cheruvattath R ; Orrego M ; Gautam M ; Byrne T ; Alam S ; Voltchenok M ; Edwin M ; Wilkens J ; Williams JW ; Vargas HE
    Affiliation: Division of Transplantation Medicine, Mayo Clinic Arizona, Phoenix, AZ 85054, USA. Title: Vitamin A toxicity: when one a day doesn’t keep the doctor away. Source: Liver transplantation : official publication of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases and the International Liver Transplantation Society (Liver Transpl) 2006 Dec; 12(12): 1888-91
    Additional Info: United States Standard No: ISSN: 1527-6465 (Print); 1527-6473 (Electronic); NLM Unique Journal Identifier: 100909185

    Prakash R Title: The acute and chronic toxic effects of vitamin A. Source: The American journal of clinical nutrition (Am J Clin Nutr) 2006 Aug; 84(2): 462; author reply 462-3
    Additional Info: United States Standard No: ISSN: 0002-9165 (Print); NLM Unique Journal Identifier: 0376027

    O’Brien B ; Quigg C ; Leong T
    Affiliation: Department of Anaesthesia, Our Lady’s Hospital for Sick Children, Dublin, Ireland. drbobrien@hotmail.com Title: Severe cyanide toxicity from ‘vitamin supplements’. Source: European journal of emergency medicine : official journal of the European Society for Emergency Medicine (Eur J Emerg Med) 2005 Oct; 12(5): 257-8
    Additional Info: England Standard No: ISSN: 0969-9546 (Print); NLM Unique Journal Identifier: 9442482 Language: English Abstract: The use of alternative medicines is increasing and poorly regulated. We describe a case of severe cyanide poisoning arising from amygdalin, a putative vitamin supplement. A 32-year-old woman arrived in the emergency department by ambulance unresponsive, shocked and with fixed dilated pupils. She was hypothermic and tachycardic but was breathing spontaneously. Despite her age, she had documented breast cancer with hepatic metastases. Conventional treatment having failed, she only took ‘vitamin supplements’ bought on the Internet, her father said. Over the next 6 h she required mechanical ventilation and increasing doses of inotropes. Diabetes insipidus developed. As the appropriateness of further treatment was considered, a relative arrived with her medications including ‘vitamin B 17′ or amygdalin. An Internet search identified this as a debunked cancer remedy and cyanogen. Serum thiocyanate level was markedly elevated. She recovered fully over 8 h. While various antidotes to cyanide exist, in this case supportive therapy alone proved effective.

    Bromley J ; Hughes BG ; Leong DC ; Buckley NA
    Affiliation: Department of Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology, The Canberra Hospital, Garran, Australia. jonathan.bromley@act.gov.au Title: Life-threatening interaction between complementary medicines: cyanide toxicity following ingestion of amygdalin and vitamin C. Source: The Annals of pharmacotherapy (Ann Pharmacother) 2005 Sep; 39(9): 1566-9
    Additional Info: United States

    Wooltorton E Title: Too much of a good thing? Toxic effects of vitamin and mineral supplements. Source: CMAJ : Canadian Medical Association journal = journal de l’Association medicale canadienne (CMAJ) 2003 Jul 8; 169(1): 47-8 Additional Info: Canada Standard No: ISSN: 0820-3946 (Print); 1488-2329 (Electronic); NLM Unique Journal Identifier: 9711805

  8. I have read and read and read that document, and I can’t see at all why people think it’s a threat to vitamins or supplements. It’s non-binding, it creates no new law, and it directly *cites* DSHEA several times. So many people and sites seem to think the FDA is drawing a line, but this document is supposed to show where the lines already are.

    Plus that – the best vitamins are the ones in fresh foods, baby!

  9. dk

    Elio, I will agree that I am not an expert on the law, but of the reviews that I have read, the attorneys who reviewed it felt that it’s passage opened the door to the FDA and hence the medical and pharma industries to have more control over our access to vitamins.
    Of the studies you quote, unless I missed something, they appear to discuss Vitamin A overdose, (a possibility) but again how often does it actually, factually take place? The other studies, (or at least most of the other ones you quoted) appeared from the titles to involve consumption of apricot pits, or derivatives from them. These are not vitamins or minerals, but apricot pits. :)

    Show me a study of the number of serious diseases or deaths that take place in the U.S. from VITAMINS AND MINERALS and then I will listen more closely.

    Thanks to all of you for your interest in this important issue.

    One of the comments was too full of anger and negativity, so I didn’t post it. :)

  10. Elio Spinello

    My only point was to address the belief that any vitamin consumption is totally safe. The current proposal is designed to simply provide international guidelines for consumption based on the current research. Since vitamins sales are regulated by DSHEA, and that fact is acknowledged in the current FDA proprosal, my sense is that any disagreement with the proposal is due to defensiveness by vitamin manufacturers and retailers in having anyone but them comment on safe and appropriate consumption guidelines. One more bit of research that demonstrates the need for international guidelines…

    “CHICAGO (Reuters) – Men who pop too many vitamins in the hope of improving their health may in fact be raising their risk of the deadliest forms of prostate cancer, especially men with a family history of the disease, researchers said on Tuesday.”

    “Researchers at the
    National Cancer Institute found that men who exceeded the recommended dose — taking more than seven multivitamins a week — increased the risk of advanced cancer by about 30 percent”

    “No studies have yet found that people benefit from taking multivitamin and mineral supplements, and some studies have found that vitamins like A and iron are toxic at high levels. Beta-carotene has been found to increase the risk of lung cancer in smokers.”

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070515/hl_nm/cancer_vitamins_dc_1;_ylt=AmhdPS2Qt3J2WwckIaC7eJpkM3wV

    The original abstract and full text can be found at: http://jnci.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/abstract/99/10/754

  11. dk

    O.K. So here is my take on the above comments. I like the idea of free press, and free speech, whether it is in agreement with me or against.

    The funny thing is that almost 100% of the people I meet state that they know that vitamins are good for you. Most people don’t read research, and only go by the digested news that is given them on T.V.

    No one I have ever spoken to in 25 years of health discussions have ever mentioned a bad effect of vitamins. I have heard thousands and thousands of stories of how a vitamin helped them.

    I find it very interesting that the comments I have received on this page are all almost completely from people who are against free access to vitamins. Hmmm….. who would benefit from limiting access to vitamins? Who has enough money to pay bloggers to search the net looking for places to try to state that vitamins don’t help.

    I know thousands of people read this site every week. I would love some of you who are not as brave, to leave comments and state your opinion. To those who disagree with me, “God bless this country that we can! :)

  12. Elio Spinello

    I think you are taking some of these comments out of context. I am not against free access to vitamins. I think that vitamins are generally a good thing. As you also noted, I see that there is a lack of reliance on research.

    The reason I am in favor of the FDA proposal is that it recognizes the legitimate scientific research related to the safety and efficacy of vitamins while not, in any way restricting access to them. As I and others have noted, access to vitamins and other nutritional supplements is specifically not regulated (unless a known safety issue has been identified) by the FDA under DSHEA. The FDA change specifically acknowledges supplement accessibility under DSHEA. From my perspective, the CODEX modification is a n important step toward providing sound international recommendations for vitamin consumption while still protecting their availability.

  13. Another big question that needs to be asked is whether the vitamins and minerals that were used in these “vitamins are dangerous” studies were synthetically derived, or if they were from a natural organic whole food source. Were they alive or dead nutrients? To be fully compatible with the cells/body, don’t nutrients need to contain carbon, be carbon-bond, be wrapped in carbon, or in other words, be organic? This carbon-bond quality is the process of photosynthesis by plants. Since man and his environment evolved together, they are perfectly compatible with each other. It’s a symbiotic relationship. Manmade synthetics have been shown repeatedly to not be properly compatible with the cells that make up the body. And on top of that, countless research has also shown that most nutrients work best IN COMBINATION with each other, such as what a whole food provides. Isolated nutrients don’t provide the same benefits. So can a person die from a vitamin A or B3 overdose? Maybe, but I’m sure the chances increase significantly if they’re synthetic and isolated.

    There’s an excellent article on this topic over here…
    http://www.kakadujuice.com/wholefood.asp

    I know this post doesn’t address the Codex, but it does (hopefully) clear up the safety issues regarding vitamins and minerals.

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