PDA

View Full Version : vegan multivitamin (s)



Pages : [1] 2 3

foxytina_69
Jun 22nd, 2004, 02:25 PM
does everyone here take a multivitamin and if so, what kind?

eve
Jun 23rd, 2004, 08:21 AM
Yes I take a multivitamin; it's called Executive Stress Formula B - though I'm not an executive and don't suffer stress. It just happens to contain all the Bs, plus minerals and some herbs. The plain 'multivitamin' pills tend to contain vit D, that I don't need and which mostly is from an animal source. However, foxytina, I'm in Australia and perhaps our supplements are different to yours.

Korn
Jun 23rd, 2004, 01:06 PM
You might be interested in this:

"Herbert et al.2 (1982, USA) reported that vitamins B1, B3, C, and E, and copper and iron can damage B12. They tested 15 multivitamin preparations used daily by approximately 100 million Americans for inactive B12 analogues and all preparations contained some (6-27% of total corrinoids)". ( From http://www.veganhealth.org/b12/vegansources )

...this:
"Because the origin of cobalamin (vitamin B12) analogues in animal chows and animal and human blood and tissues is unknown, we investigated the possibility that multivitamin interactions might convert cobalamin to cobalamin analogues. We homogenized three popular multivitamin-mineral pills in water, incubated them at 37 degrees C for 2 h, and isolated the cobalamin. Using paper chromatography we observed that 20-90% of the cobalamin was present as cobalamin analogues. Studies using CN-[57Co]cobalamin showed that these analogues were formed due to the concerted action of vitamin C, thiamine, and copper on CN-cobalamin. These cobalamin analogues are absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract of mice and either fail to stimulate or actually inhibit cobalamin-dependent enzymes when injected parenterally. We conclude that CN-cobalamin can be converted to potentially harmful cobalamin analogues by multivitamin-mineral interactions and that these interactions may be responsible for the presence of cobalamin analogues in animal chows and animal and human blood and tissues."

( From http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/articlerender.fcgi?artid=370297 )


... and this: "Vitamin B12 Initially natural food complex vitamin B12 was given for people with pernicious anemia in the form of raw liver, but due to cost considerations a synthetic USP isolate was developed [30]. Cyanocobalamin (the common pharmacological/USP form of vitamin B12) is not found significantly as such in the body; it is usually present in reduced metabolically active co-enzyme forms (without the cyanide) often conjugated in peptide linkage [31,32]. According to Herbert (and others) vitamin B-12 when ingested in its human-active form is non-toxic, yet Herbert and Das have warned that "the efficacy and safety of the vitamin B12 analogues created by nutrient-nutrient interaction in vitamin-mineral supplements is unknown" [31]. Some synthetic vitamin B12 analogues seem to be antagonistic to vitamin B12 activity in the body [33,34]. Synthetic B-12 is made through a fermentation process with the addition of cyanide [8]. An animal study found that a natural food complex vitamin B12 was absorbed 2.56 times more into the blood and was retained 1.59 times more in the liver than isolated USP cyanocobalamin [11]." ( http://www.anma.com/mon54.html )

cedarblue
Jun 23rd, 2004, 06:59 PM
korn, you are prolific in providing info about b12 - but would you share you personal opinion? do you take? why?why not?

NO PRESSURE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
:)

Korn
Jun 24th, 2004, 09:32 AM
korn, you are prolific in providing info about b12 - but would you share you personal opinion? do you take? why?why not?
:)
Hi Cedarblue, I'm a bit reluctant about sharing my personal opinions - simply because I started this forum and and I post a lot of B12 related info; people could start to believe that my personal opinion is a general advice, and I don't think giving simple, general advice always is a good idea: if I write that I don't take multivitamins, and someone who reads this who is in strong need for B12 or other vitamins would consider what I write a general advice and not take supplements when he actually would need them, I could cause health trouble for this person.

But since you ask: :) No, I don't use multivitamins. I think we should get the nutrients we need from water and food. In the special case of vitamin D, sunlight is the natural source. If I get too little sunlight, for example because I work indoors during the daylight hours, I'd rather change my working routines or travel to a sunny place for some weeks. Of course I could take a vitamin D pill, and I have done it, but I strongly believe in 'natural' ways of staying healthy whenever possible.

Regarding B12, there are many reasons people could be B12 deficient. If it is correct that B12 inside a multivitamin maybe won't help you at all, and even cause harm (due to the B12 analogue-issue with multivitamins, explained in several posts in our message board), people who think that healthy humans cannot distinguish between true and analogue B12 most likely would be better off with a B12 supplement (possibly with some calcium and a little vit. C) than a multivitamin.

Some people might misunderstand my focus on B12 as some sort of campaign against taking B12 - it is not. My main reasons for emphasizing alternative information on B12 is that there is so much misleading B12 info on other sites, even vegan sites. Many of them state that plants do not contain B12, that fortified food and multivitamins are reliable sources of B12, and very often forget the possible problem with B12 analogues in fortified food and multivitamins, but always mention the 'problem' with B12 analogues in plants. To my surprise, many vegans site repeatedly mention the low or absent levels of B12 in plants, even try to document it, and never mention or document all the other B12 reducing factors out there: chlorination of water, use of microwave ovens, copper in multivitamins and water tubes and so on. The list is long.

I'm biased. The more I learn about the B12 issue, the more it looks like nature, in it's un-destroyed state, has provided the B12 we need in plants, soil, and water. There are good reasons to take B12 seriously, especially for vegans, and especially for pregnant/lactating women and children, but I suspect that using multivitamins is the least good solution. There is also this thing with general vs. personal advice: if you drink coffee, alcohol, are exposed to mercury (amalgam, pollution), smoke and eat little fresh, organic produce, your need for external B12 is very different from one with a more 'pure' lifestyle. Plus, the multivitamins are all different: some contain less B12 than others, and since iron and copper can damage B12 and convert true B12 into B12 analogues, some multivitamins could actually be listed as B12 reducing factors!

Here's the scenario: your B12 levels are low. You start to eat multivitamins, and take a new blood test, and your levels now seem fine. The problem is that these blood tests actually don't prove that your increased B12 levels will heal the possible problems you might have had from low B12. Your multivitamins might mask a real deficiency. If it is correct that B12 analogues never is a good idea (and to make it more difficult: I don't think this is always the case), consuming B12 analogues in both multivitamins and in fortified food, seaweed, algae or other plants would be a bad idea. But there are reasons to believe that a healthy body gan consume both true, active, bio-avaliable B12 and B12 analogues, and absorb/use the real B12 and ignore the analogues.

Many people, including vegans and others who give advice on nutrition claim that:
1) "There are no plants that can be used as reliable B12 sources." There's unfortunately very little research on this. The research that does exist, seem to ignore important 'details': were the tested plants fresh / were they exposed to light for several years after they had been picked? Exposed to pesticides or other chemicals (like chlorine) that is known to reduce B12? Cooked? Did the test procedure involve heating? And what about the thousands of plants that have never been tested? What about the B12 levels in water, trees (leaves and bark is said to contain B12), and plants we until now haven't been using for food?
2) "Multivitamins / B12 fortified food can be considered reliable B12 sources." If you are given this advice by someone, you'll probably notice that they won't comment on the fact that B12 in a multivitamin can be converted to a B12 analogue. Or that there are B12 analogues in B12 fortified food (and in a traditional, animal based diet).

In order to 'make veganism more available', a number of sites don't mention that it's important to look at your life style - and that almost everything Average Joe does, is reducing his B12 levels. For example, the two most sold drugs in USA, sleeping pills and oral contraceptives, does. Coffee, tea, sugar tobacco, alcohol, cooking, canning, freezing and microwaving does. The chlorinated water you drink does, and the chlorine seem to continue to do it's work even after you consumed it, so it disturbs the natural process in your intestines, and most likely reduce the body's ability to produce/reuse B12. And so on....

When vegans claim that the plants are the reason that vegans may develop B12 deficiency, they often mention that "B12 is stored in the liver", and that "it can take up to 35 years before you get any symptoms of B12 deficiency". Well, B12 isn't stored in the liver alone. It's also stored in ie. the muscle mass. And the '35 years'-thing is interesting: Let's say you become a vegan when you are 25. 25+35=60. So you might become B12 deficient when you are 60 - or before. But wait: that's true for meat eaters too! Actually, it is suggested that all people, independent on their diet, should take B12 after the age of 50. (This makes the 'is it natural to live on a vegan diet'-debate interesting..... is it natural to live longer than 50? ;) ).

No, I'm not going to suggest that 'It's not natural to live longer than 50 years', based on the general advice that 'normal' people above 50 (who should be FULL of B12, based on their diet) often are B12 deficient.

It is correct that people who don't eat the liver, blood and muscles of other plant eaters are more vulnerable to B12 deficiency that people who are known to chew on others' vitamin reserves (read: meat) regularly. Just like it is likely that people who aren't stealing money from others on a daily basis have less money than people who don't steal others' nutrients... sorry, cash, regularly.

The amount of B12 we need to consume is microscopic, and it's a known fact that microscopic amounts of B12 are hard to measure. It's also difficult to find out, in a B12 test, if the B12 is 'true' or 'false', plus there is some disagreement regarding the possible bad effects of consuming B12 analogues. So part of the problem is that the test methods for microscopic B12 levels aren't reliable. Most, if not all, research that has been done by people who have nothing against eating meat. It's a lot easier for them to say 'There are no reliable plant based B12 sources' than to say 'The methods we use to measure microscopic B12 levels aren't reliable, we don't know how much of a problem B12 analogues really represent, and frankly, the way you live means that you are killing the B12 you possibly consume - and to be honest, there are thousands of types of plants that we have never tested for B12, and never will'.

Sorry if I seem to make this multivitamin/B12 thing complicated; it actually is, (even for non-vegans!) - most of all because there is too little serious research on the issue. It's very unfortunate that the organized part of the vegan movement doesn't seem to care.

cedarblue
Jun 24th, 2004, 08:31 PM
thanks korn, i appreciate your sharing and your standpoint. keep up the good work of b12 information, you are right it IS confusing and finding a route through to the truth can be tricky. thanks for your help and into tho'!

cedar ;)

eve
Jul 2nd, 2004, 07:38 AM
Have you seen this article about B12? http://www.fredericpatenaude.com/b12.html#restarticle

Korn
Jul 2nd, 2004, 09:03 AM
Yes, and we've done an interview with dr Gabriel Cousens about the article, which will be followed up by discussions here at the forum.... stay tuned! :)

Marlene
Jul 2nd, 2004, 10:00 AM
I don't take any vitamins, I think we can get our neccesary nutrients just from food (as our ancestors have been doing for millions of years). Do we know enough at this point to feed ourselves artificially with confidence? Humans are frugivores by nature, consistent with a vegan diet.

Korn
Jan 14th, 2005, 12:46 AM
If it is correct that B12 inside a multivitamin maybe won't help you at all, and even cause harm (due the B12 analogue-issue with multivitamins, explained in several posts in our message board, people who think that healthy humans cannot distinguish between true and analogue B12 most likely would be better off with a B12 supplement (possibly with some calcium and a little vit. C) than a multivitamin.


Just to make myself clear: The reason some vegans take multivitamins instead of ie. spirulina, chlorella, tempeh or other plant based sources of B12, is that they have heard that plant based sources of B12 contain B12 analogues, which might not only *not* have any effect, but which might be harmful. If this is correct, taking multivitamins, which might also contain B12 analogues (since ie. copper in the multivitmains can convert the B12 in these pills into B12 analogies), isn't a logical solution.

Trendygirl
Jan 14th, 2005, 01:18 AM
This is what Dr Greger says you should be taking for optimum vegan health. I have read and watch many of this Doctors work and I totally trust what he says

http://www.drgreger.org/optimum.pdf

Also try

http://www.drgreger.org/writings.html

http://www.drgreger.org/

http://www.drgreger.org/talks/

and watch the videos at

http://www.vegsource.com/

Miel Miette
Jan 14th, 2005, 06:46 AM
I don't/shouldn't take multivitamins because my natural iron levels are already too high, adding the extra iron found in the supplements would not be a good idea. I occasionally take B12 and calcium. I do tend to agree with those who say we can get all our nutrients from our diet, but I don't always eat that well, so I supplement. (When I remember :p )

Korn
Jan 14th, 2005, 11:09 AM
I just rewrote/added something to this part of my post above:


Here's the scenario: your B12 levels are low. You start to eat multivitamins, and take a new blood test, and your levels now seem fine. The problem is that these blood test actually don't prove that your increased B12 levels will heal the possible problems you might have had from low B12 levels. Your multivitamin pills might mask a real deficiency. If it is correct that B12 analogues never is a good idea (and to make it more difficult: I don't think this is always the case), consuming B12 analogues in both multivitamins and in fortified food, seaweed, algae or other plants is a bad idea. But there are reasons to believe that a healthy body can consume both true, active, bio-avaliable B12 and B12 analogues, and absorb/use the real B12 and ignore the analogues.

The scary part is: many people, including vegans and others who give advice on nutrition claim that:
1) "There are no plants that can be used as reliable B12 sources." There's unfortunately very little research on this. The research that does exist, seem to ignore important 'details': were the tested plants fresh / were they exposed to light for several years after they had been picked? Exposed to pesticides or other chemicals (like chlorine) that is known to reduce B12? Cooked? And what about the thousands of plants that have never been tested? What about the B12 levels in water, trees (bark), and plants we until now haven't been using for food?
2) "Multivitamins / B12 fortified food can be considered reliable B12 sources." If you are given this advice by someone, you'll probably notice that they won't comment on the fact that B12 in a multivitamin can be converted to a B12 analogue. Or that there are B12 analogues in B12 fortified food.

Most importantly, in order to 'make veganism more available', a number of sites don't mention that it's important to look at your life style - and that almost everything Average Joe does is reducing his B12 levels. For example, the two most sold drugs in USA, sleeping pills and oral contraceptives, does. Coffee, tea, sugar tobacco, alcohol, cooking, canning, freezing and microwaving does. The chlorinated water you drink does, and the chlorine seem to continue to do it's work even after you consumed it, so it disturbs the natural process in your intestines, and most likely reduce the body's ability to produce/reuse B12. And so on....

When vegans claim that the plants are the reason that vegans may develop B12 deficiency, they often mention that "B12 is stored in the liver", and that "it can take up to 35 years before you get any symptoms of B12 deficiency". Well, B12 isn't stored in the liver alone. it's also stored in ie. the muscle mass. And the '35 years'-thing is interesting: Let's say you become a vegan when you are 25. 25+35=60. So you might become B12 deficient when you are 60 - or before. But wait: that's true for meat eaters too! Actually, it is suggested that all people, independent on their diet, should take B12 after the age of 50. (This makes the 'is it natural to live on a vegan diet'-debate interesting..... is it 'natural' to live longer than 50? ).

No, I'm not going to suggest that 'It's not natural to live longer than 50 years', based on the general advice that 'normal' people above 50 (who should be FULL of B12, based on their previous diet) often are B12 deficient. And it is correct that people who don't eat the liver, blood and muscles of other plant eaters are more vulnerable to B12 deficiency that people who are known to chew on others' vitamin reserves regularly. Just like it is likely that people who aren't stealing money from others on a daily basis have less money than people who don't steal others' nutrients... sorry, cash, regularly.

An important part of the vegan+B12 issue is that the amount of B12 we need to consume is microscopic, and it's a known fact that microscopic amounts of B12 are hard to measure, plus it's difficult to find out, in a B12 test, if the B12 is 'true' or 'false', and there is some disagreement regarding the possible bad effects of consuming B12 analogues. So part of the problem is that the test methods for microscopic B12 levels aren't reliable. Most, if not all, research that has been done by people who have nothing against eating meat. It's a lot easier for them to say 'There are no reliable plant based B12 sources' than to say 'The methods we use to measure microscopic B12 levels aren't reliable, we don't know how much of a problem B12 analogues really represent, and frankly, the way you live means that you are killing the B12 you possibly consume - and to be honest, there are thousands of types of plants that we have never tested for B12, and never will'.

eve
Jan 20th, 2005, 03:38 AM
Just alerted to a website with useful info on medications and supplements: http://www.WorstPills.org

mysh
Apr 11th, 2005, 04:24 PM
Does anyone have any recommendations for multivitamins that are available in the US? I've not been taking any since going vegan, and I'm pretty sure I don't get what I need from what I eat. As an interim fix I want to start taking a multivitamin, so I'm looking for some recommendations.

snaffler
Apr 12th, 2005, 11:26 AM
I take Vegan Multivitamin Timed Release (http://www.questvitamins.co.uk/xcart/customer/product.php?productid=2964&cat=14&page=1) timed release is good as it works like this.

In contrast to conventional tablets, which releases all the ingredients within a short period of time - usually less than 30 minutes, timed release tablets meter out small quantities over a prolonged period - Quest timed release is over six hours. The importance of timed release technology lies with the water soluble vitamins which cannot be stored by the body. As normal digestion occurs, the tablet is eroded by the enzymes of the digestive tract, and the nutrients bound in the timed release matrix are slowly released. This allows time for the maximum absorption of the nutrients in the digestive tract and therefore their efficient utilisation.

DoveInGreyClothing
Apr 20th, 2005, 02:21 PM
I take Seven Seas Multivitamins and Minerals for vegans and vegetarians.

celtic rose
Apr 20th, 2005, 05:35 PM
I take Seven Seas Multivitamins and Minerals for vegans and vegetarians.
snap

Fashionfreak
May 11th, 2005, 09:10 PM
I was reading that different brands of multi-vitamins absorb into the system differently.

Which do you think are the best?

Melina
May 18th, 2005, 09:02 PM
So I just got myself some vegan vitamins, the only brand they sell at the healthfood store here (I'm in Holland), called "Solgar, and I'm wondering what's up with the RDA's. They say, take 1-3 capsules daily. And 3 capsules provide 70% of your iron RDA, 5% of your calcium RDA, and 15000% of your B12 RDA. What is up with that? Why would some RDA's be so low, and the B12 so insanely high? I am used to taking a multivitamin that has 100% RDA of everything, per capsule/tablet. The differences in the numbers are confusing to me, I'm wondering if these vitamins are good, if this is normal for vegan vitamins? Also, there are no vegan multivitamins available for children here. I got vegan B12, and I'm breaking them up into 4 pieces and giving my 16 month old vegan daughter a quarter a day. She is getting extra flaxseed oil daily for her Omega 3's. Am I doing well?

Stu
May 18th, 2005, 09:19 PM
Hi Melina.

No, it isn't that the RDA for Vitamin B-12 is high; in fact, it's extremely low. Hence 3 of these capsules provide 150 times the amount which your body requires (i.e. 15000%).

Hope that helps.

Melina
May 18th, 2005, 09:37 PM
I'm pretty confused Stu! Is it just that I suck at math? If it's 5% RDA for calcium, that means I am getting .05 times the amount my body needs per day? Why so low for some and so high for others?

DoveInGreyClothing
May 18th, 2005, 11:16 PM
Why so low for some and so high for others?

For Vitamins/minerals with high amounts like b12, it's because you need so little of it that 100% would be too tiny to handle, let alone add to a vitamin, therefore you get 150 times what you'd actually need. The excess is harmless.
For vitamins/minerals where you get less than 100%, in most cases you will get plenty from a balanced diet anyway, it's just supplementing what you already receive from food. Some vitamins/minerals are dangerous if overdosed on, that's why you only get a little of these. (I know what I'm trying to say, I hope I'm making sense here!)
Vitamins should be trated as a back-up, not your main source of your nutrition, which should be your diet, so you really shouldn't need to take them everyday, a couple of times a week should suffice under normal circumstances, up it to everyday if you've got a cold, feel run down or during your period, if it's heavy. What you're giving your daughter sounds ok. Don't worry, so long as she eats a well balanced diet, she'll be fine. Even fortified soya milk or nutritional yeast will ensure she gets enough b12.
Hope that clarifies things a bit for you. If I see a good link on the subject, I'll post it for you.

FR
May 19th, 2005, 07:10 AM
Am I doing well?

I'd say so! Most people when given sound advice tend to rebel against it. You on the other hand took heed to the sound advice and ditched the non-vegan vitamins. :)

Melina
May 19th, 2005, 04:23 PM
Yep I ditched those non-vegan vitamins right after I learned what gelatin really is. Man I had no freakin idea! I was so grossed out I nearly puked. I understand now Dove, thanks for your post! I am eating a very well-balanced diet, so I'll do what you said and take one of these vitamins every 2-3 days. Anyone know why they are so darn expensive compared to the non-vegan vitamins?