Should you take Vitamins A, B, C, D, and E? The science on multivitamins as a preventative for disease is inconclusive according to the National Institute of Health. However, most dieticians recommend a multivitamin and fish oil/omega-3 fatty acid supplementation for the prevention of heart disease.

Use caution when taking vitamins. Taking supplements without knowing whether you actually need them could be a waste of money and also dangerous. For example, taking iron when you don’t need it can be toxic, and taking some supplements with medication can interfere with absorption. As an example, thyroid medication should always be taken with water on an empty stomach, at least 45 minutes prior to eating or drinking or taking any vitamins and supplements. Taking St. John’s Wort with some medications can cause serious interactions. In fact, St. John’s Wort is so dangerous that it’s only available as a prescription in some countries.

Vitamins, herbs, and supplements can be powerful, and that means they can help as well as harm you.

Look at your lab work* to determine if you have any vitamin deficiencies. If you have any concerns about supplementation and interactions, be sure to discuss them with your physician and/or pharmacist.

*It is within your rights to request a copy of your lab work from your doctor.