Just as the name implies, MegaVitamin therapy is the process in which normal vitamins are taken at higher then normal doses (Mega Dose). Without a doubt, some vitamins have shown amazing health benefits in preventing disease and in some cases even treating disease. But can too much of a good thing be dangerous? Can a vitamin that improves your health at a low dose, impair your health at a mega dose? It’s only logical to think taking more of a vitamin is a good idea. I mean vitamins are synonymous with being healthy and beneficial. So why would anyone think otherwise? On the surface, whether you are taking a daily MultiVitamin or a mega dose vitamin cocktail, both can look pretty harmless. However, that observation is a simple one. And vitamins are anything but simple, especially if they are being used to prevent or treat disease.
MegaVitamin Therapy Dosage.
Some vitamins are practically impossible to overdose on while others are easier then you think. For example, Vitamin D has shown itself to be beneficial in almost every study recently published. But dosage is important just like I explained in my vitamin D3 article. At blood levels below 30ng/ml, no health benefits will be realized. On the other hand, blood levels above 100ng/ml causes hypercalcemia and atrial fibrillation. This is a perfect example that more is not always better. Just like it’s easy to be deficient in vitamin d, it’s also really easy to overdose. You can find vitamin d supplements containing a whooping mega dose 10,000 IU per serving. Take more then you should and easily get to levels higher then recommended. That is why checking your blood levels periodically is very important.
Vitamin C on the other hand is a completely different animal altogether. It’s basically impossible to over dose on vitamin C. This is partly because most of the vitamin C excess will not be adsorbed and will be eliminated by the body. And because of this elimination, diarrhea is about the worse side effect you will notice form a vitamin c mega dose. But at that point your basically throwing vitamin C down the toilet. So what’s the point of taking a mega dose?
Mega Dose Vitamin Misconception.
Thinking a vitamin is healthy no matter how much you take is a common misconception. Many vitamins just like vitamin D, carry serious side effects when a mega dose is taken. Not all vitamins are created equal. And not all vitamins are shown to be beneficial in studies which would eliminate the need to take a mega dose in the first place.
Vitamin D has a great resume, whereas other vitamins like vitamin E trail far far behind, so limiting its use might be a good idea. For instance, combining these two vitamins might not be the best choice.
Mixed Vitamins have mixed results. If you think about it, mixing a bunch of vitamins together might not be a good idea unless you are sure no conflicts are possible. Studies have shown both positive and negative results when vitamin cocktails are used.
A double blind randomized study showed selenium, zinc, vitamin A, Vitamin C, and Vitamin E reduced the risk of adenomas recurrence.
Coemzyme Q10, Riboflavin, and Niacin reduced pro-angiogenic marker levels in breast cancer patients undergoing tamoxifen therapy.
Transfer Factor Plus, Whey Protein, Vitamin C, Agaricus Blazeii Murill Teas, Immune Modulator (combination of vitamins + minerals), Nitrogenated soy extract, and Andrographis Paniculata increased tumor necrosis factor and natural killer cell function in advanced cancer patients.
pONS a blend of anti-oxidants including( Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Selenium, Zinc) did not reduce oxidative stress and systemic inflammation markers in cancer patients.
Vitamin E, Soy, And selenium did not prevent the progression to prostate cancer.
MegaVitamin Therapy of beta-carotene, vitamin c, niacin, selenium, coenzyme Q10, and zinc did not improve breast cancer survival or disease free survival.
Lycopene, selenium, and green tea did not prevent prostate cancer and actually increased cancer rates. If you have or had precancerous prostatic lesions, please read this study.
As you can see the results are pretty mixed. This makes it confusing when trying to figure out whether a MegaVitamin therapy or vitamin supplements in general are worth the risk. The issue stems from the sheer amount of variables. We have people taking vitamins, all of which have unique chemistry. Then you have patients being treated for the same general disease but might have different sub-types. Not to mention unique absorption rates, nutritional deficiencies, past drug use, age, etc etc. I can go on and on about all the variables that can have an effect on how a simple vitamin can work with-in the body.
And mixing vitamins together isn’t helping things either. Taking a MegaVitamin Therapy Cocktail is a recipe for disaster. Which vitamins will work together and which won’t? Combining vitamins just because they are vitamins is not a good strategy. If you don’t have a scientific reason to combine certain vitamins, then don’t. It might feel your doing your body good taking that super anti-oxidant MegaVitamin drink, but in reality you might be doing more harm then good.
This can be especially true for cancer patients that also have to add cancer drugs to the already endless list of variables. All it takes is one conflict and any benefit that the Megavitamin therapy might have had, is completely wiped out. The only Vitamin Cocktail you should ever consider, is a recommended dose MultiVitamin, and even that is debatable with the scientific research available at the moment. Just look at this MultiVitamin study A & this MultiVitamin Study B. So in the end, stick to whats proven, and leave the experiments to the professionals. And if you do decide to try MegaVitamin therapy, make sure proper research is used.