≡ Top Menu ≡Categories Menu

You are here: Home » Vitamin Overdose – Taking Too Many Supplements?

In the spirit of art imitating life, I want you to take a walk down memory lane. Think of the plethora of movies you have watched over the years and stop at those movies where a character attempted to commit suicide. This is not a macabre post, there’s a reason for this exercise.

Now that you’ve got the movie scene and character in mind, think about the method in which the character decides to end it all. Did he or she use a rope? Run off the side of the road? Jump off a bridge? Swallow a bunch of pills?

For those characters that decided to swallow pills, what did they swallow? Some of them grabbed any prescription they found in the house and swallowed as many as they could. Others mixed over the counter medicine with prescription drugs. Some were successful in completing the task while others ended up in the emergency room getting their stomach’s pumped.

What You Didn’t See

Now, let’s think a little harder. In any of the suicide scenes, did any of the characters reach for bottles of vitamins? Did any down a bottle of vitamin A, B, C, D or minerals? C’mon. Think a little harder.Pills

I’ve been around the block a time or 20 and I cannot think of a single movie in which the character tried to end it all with vitamins, not unless it was a spoof.

Too Many Vitamins

When I get questions about whether or not I’m taking too much vitamin C or the ill effects of vitamin B overdose, I chuckle. The worst that usually happens when you take too much of a vitamin is that you may have to run to the bathroom frequently or, if you take too much niacin you’ll get a niacin flush or a bit of nausea, but death?

If you want more information on death by drugs vs. death by vitamins, visit the American Centers for Poison Control Centers. They offer free annual reports of the various deaths by poison. Their reports go as far back as 1999. For a summary of vitamin deaths going further back to 1983, visit Doctor Yourself.com.

In the 29 years of tracking poison deaths, there were 11 attributed to vitamins. The ACPCC report applied an RCF rating of 4 (Relative Contribution to Fatality)  to some of those deaths.  An RCF of 4 means “probably not responsible.”CDC Prescription Drug Deaths

29 years with 11 deaths (maybe), vs. the CDC statistic of “100 people die from drug overdoses every day in the United States,” I’ll stick with taking my vitamins.

Don’t worry about me taking too many vitamins. The real concern is; have you read the side effects of the drugs you are taking?

About the author: Felicia has learned the hard way that health, whether good or bad, is a result of daily choices and habits. On this blog, Felicia shares what she’s learned and the healthier choices she now makes as a result of her new knowledge. She hopes to encourage others to experiment to find alternative solutions to nagging problems (she’s also is a bit of a tree hugger and likes to share ways to lighten the toxic burden on the environment).

in Nutrition, Vitamin C, Vitamins

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Rosy April 14, 2013, 11:44 pm

    That was an interesting read and I had a chuckle as well certainly death by vitamin doesn’t feature too prominently in my memory. But I do agree on the dangers of prescribed medication – after having toothache the last 3 days I took panedine forte my daughter in law gave me and felt violently ill – so think I will be givng them a wide berth if my doctor ever prescribes them.