Millions of Americans are spending billions of dollars each year buying megavitamin supplements in an attempt to prevent or cure physical ailments from the common cold to cancer, avoid mental depression, and starve off the effects of old age. What they don’t know is that not only are they wasting their money, but they may be endangering their lives.
In Vitamin Politics, John Fried shows how we have been misled and manipulated by vitamin enthusiasts who preach megavitamin therapy for a host of common ills. Operating without a conclusive body of proof, they continue to promote massive doses of vitamins to a willing public that is more interested in miracle cures than in reasoned scientific skepticism and caution.
Vitamins taken in megadoses are no longer vitamins—they are drugs. As drugs they can and do have dangerous side effects. Numerous cases have been documented describing the effects suffered by those on megavitamin regimens including lethargy, vomiting, loss of hair, enlarged livers and spleens, and abnormal skull growth. But, Fried found, megavitamin proponents are more interested in publicity than scientific investigation, and vitamin promoters are more involved in the economics of vitamin production than in determining the effects of vitamins taken in large quantities.
Vitamin Politics, an update of Fried’s classic The Vitamin Conspiracy, combines the misinformation of vitamin faddists and offers a well-reasoned, thoroughly researched report of the facts.