Are vitamins and supplements really helpful?

This article is written by Edward Alain Pajarillo, MSc, Ph.D. Research Associate @ Florida A&M University.

Recently, I saw a post on social media about a friend of mine buying so many supplements from this well-known company (that I was also subscribing to). Then to my question, are vitamins and supplements really that helpful?

vitamins_clockHealth supplements have been in industry for many decades and there is no stopping to it. Currently, in PUBMED, there are more than 170,000 studies conducted on the topic of vitamin alone. From Vitamin A, B, C… and so on, biotin, collagen, garlic extracts and so much more. But this (confusion) and gigantic industry do not only exist for scientific studies, I, myself, as well, had my own personal experience. Last night, I went to the biggest shopping mall here in Tallahassee, Florida. Going to Walmart to do my grocery and at my last stop, I grabbed a bottle of a probiotic supplement. It was an overwhelming experience when I got to that section. There’s just a ton of supplements in one aisle, that I don’t even know what to pick. I always ask myself: Is this legit (legitimate)? Health supplements are helpful, indeed, but they are helpful when you need them. The purpose of supplements is to supplement. Not to replace. By definition, a supplement is something that completes or enhances something else when added to it. They are not meant to replace food or the nutrients you should get from it.

Simply ask these 2 qualifying questions before grabbing the next bottle of your favorite multivitamin or buying that expensive supplement that the company spent so much on marketing so it could appeal to people like you:

  1. What nutrients in my current diet am I lacking?

  2. How long should I take it?

Then check for reviews online and be keen on searching for companies that make vitamins legitimately. Don’t just fall for that catchy advertisement you see on Youtube or your favorite TV channel.


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