Do Pills Equal Power? The Truth About Vitamins

When you were younger, mom tossed you a Flintstone vitamin before you ran out the door. But what about now? Do you need to a super-sized serving of supplements just because you're bigger? In today's Healthy Living, learn what's important, and what's not, when it comes to supplements. You might need vitamins if you're a vegetarian, have food allergies or if you consume less than 1600 calories per day. Those folks may not be getting enough food or varieties of foods. Pharmacist Sam Pratt says vitamins boost a poor diet. Sadly, the U.S. government says only 10 percent of Americans eat healthy. But mega-dosing on vitamins a, k, e and d can lead to bone and liver damage. Zinc's a good utility vitamin, boosting your vision, your ability to heal – and it helps you fight infections. Foods like lobster, crab and yogurt are all good sources of Zinc. The U.S. government says if you're healthy and eat all four food groups most of the time – you don't need a thing. Just in case you still think too many vitamins won't hurt you, think about this: an Oregon State University study showed too much vitamin A can cause brain swelling in some cases. And according to the Mayo Clinic, too much vitamin D can lead to kidney stones and abnormal heart rhythms.