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Some Vitamins Beneficial, Others a Waste of Money

'Tis the season for getting sick, and also the season many set goals or New Year's resolutions to either loose weight or make healthier choices. WHAG’s Shayna Halper spoke with a local nutritionist to find out the best way to do that, after three new studies prove vitamins could just be a waste of your money.
FREDERICK, Md - Three new studies out this week show the best way to get all the vitamins and minerals you need is from food. Local nutritionist Susan Hirsh agrees and says taking a multivitamin could end up hurting you if your body doesn't have the enzymes and minerals to break them down.

Hirsch says one example is Magnesium, needed for more than 300 processes in the body and that’s found in leafy greens and vegetables.

“They think they’re getting everything they need in their multi, but you actually need Magnesium for lots of those transformations, so that's why eating foods is better than taking vitamins cause you're getting everything in the form nature intended,” said Clinical Herbalist and Certified Nutrition Specialist Susah Hirsch.

Hirsch said if you take synthetic vitamins you’re body has to work to convert them and can’t always do that. Hirsch recommends food based vitamins if you’re going to take any, and she said those can be beneficial.

“Some of the isolate synthetic vitamins deplete you on enzymes, so some people don't have those enzymes to transform vitamins and they need them for other psychological processes, so then you’re just peeing out what you don't need. The food forms are there ready and active to use by the body,” said Hirsch.

A 2011 report from the National Center for Health Statistics estimates that more than half of all adults in America used some type of supplement in the years 2003 to 2006. The recent studies shows using supplements and multivitamins to prevent chronic conditions is a waste of money, and according to the study, Americans spent 28 billions dollars on them in 2010 alone.

Hirsch recommends sticking to those leafy greens, and says to stay away from sugar this holiday season to help stay healthy. Sugar not only depresses the immune system, but also depletes enzymes your body needs to transform those vitamins.

Hirsch said food based vitamins can be beneficial and to stay away from the synthetic based products.

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