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Vitamins and supplements: what you need to know before taking them

Posted 03 February 2023

The Conversation

If you were to open your medicine cabinet right now, there’s a fair chance that you’d find at least one bottle of vitamins alongside the painkillers, plasters and cough syrup.

After all, people are definitely buying vitamins: in 2020, the global market for complementary and alternative medicines, which includes multivitamin supplements, had an estimated value of US$82.27 billion. The use of natural health products such as minerals and amino acids has increased – and continues to rise, partly driven by consumers’ buying habits during the COVID-19 pandemic.

People sought out vitamins C and D, as well as zinc supplements, as potential preventive measures against the virus – even though the evidence for their efficacy was, and remains, inconclusive.

Multivitamins and mineral supplements are easily accessible to consumers. They are often marketed for their health claims and benefits – sometimes unsubstantiated. But their … Read the rest

Quackery and mumbo-jumbo pseudo-science?

This is an invited article by a guest author who points out a discrepancy between the 'talk' and the 'walk' so often demonstrated by dedicated sellers of complementary medicines.

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