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Safety and vitamins

Alternative Names

Vitamins and safety regulations

Information

Question:

Does the government monitor the safety of vitamins?

Answer:

No. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) monitors drugs but not vitamins. However, standard vitamins and minerals are considered relatively risk free if you avoid high doses. Keep in mind that most experts feel that it is best to get your vitamins from eating a variety of foods, rather than taking pills. Very high doses of some vitamins, such as vitamin A or E, can make you ill or may increase the risk of developing other health problems. Talk to your health care provider before taking any "mega" doses of any particular vitamin.

References

US Food and Drug Administration. Fortify Your Knowledge About Vitamins. Updated February 21, 2009. Accessed March 7, 2009.

Rakel D, ed. Integrative Medicine. 2nd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2007.


Review Date: 3/9/2009
Reviewed By: Linda Vorvick, MD, Family Physician, Seattle Site Coordinator, Lecturer, Pathophysiology, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
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