About Amy Umble:
Amy Umble is health reporter for The Free Lance-Star

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A multivitamin a day? Maybe not

Mudge-RileyI take a multivitamin supplement each morning, but now I’m not so sure it’s worth it. I say that after listening to Dr. Michelle Mudge-Riley.

Mudge-Riley, left, is a doctor of osteopathic and director of wellness and medical management for the Free Lance-Star’s managed benefits company. She spoke to employees here yesterday in a lunchtime session on vitamins and other daily supplements.

Mudge-Riley said there is no evidence that a daily multivitamin helps in the prevention of disease. She quoted the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, which says, “The evidence is insufficient to recommend for or against the use of supplements of vitamins A, C, or E; multivitamins with folic acid; or antioxidant combinations for the prevention of cancer or cardiovascular disease.”

Instead, Mudge-Riley recommended five other daily supplements. These were:

1.     Fish oil: 1,000 mg. a day, for the prevention of inflammation and the reduction of blood pressure and triglycerides.

2.     Vitamin D:  1,000 IUs a day, for strong bones.

3.     Calcium: 1,000 mg. a day, for strong bones.

4.     Probiotics: For the prevention of inflammation and infection and to aid digestion. Stonyfield Farm yogurt is her favorite source of probiotics.

5.  Folic acid: 400-800 mg, for pregnant women.

Mudge-Riley also cautioned that there are no FDA regulations to ensure the purity, quality, composition or strength of supplements. She recommended that you look for the words USP or GMP on the bottle’s label. These symbols mean that the product has been tested for purity and potency.