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Vitamins and MS


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Looking back on my posts this week,  I see a definite theme. One would think that I am a killing machine, but that is not the case. In fact,  really do not think about death very often.

But I do think about proper nutrition and vitamin intake. As any MS Warrior, I read a lot about my disease and ways to alleviate the aches and pains of MS. I have always been confused about the recommended dosage of Vitamin D. How much is too much? How much is not enough? I have been told that the body will eliminate any excess quantities of this vitamin but common sense tells me that too much of anything is not good.

In this morning's Fairmont Times West Virginian this article caught my eye: "Vitamin D deficiency is widely overestimated, doctors warn".  According to Marilynn Marchione, AP Chief Medical Writer, on average people need about 400 international units of vitamin D per day, and 600 for people over 70." This statistic is in direct contradiction to what the pharmacist quoted me just last week when I asked about my 5000 IU Vitamin D tabs that GNC sold me a few months ago. The pharmacist restated what I have been told before that in the case of MS, most doctors start us out on a large dose and then downsize us to 1000 IU per day. 

The clerk  at GNC confirmed that the body would eliminate any over flow of the vitamin. But I really had a difficult time trusting his knowledge of Vitamin D in conjunction with multiple sclerosis. Especially since I nearly overdosed on the GNC brand daily vitamin pack a few years ago. (Just kidding...I do not think one can OD on vitamins, but there is always the possibility. I certainly didn't feel too great after swallowing a mega pack twice a day for an entire month.)

Marchione goes on to say that "people are told they are inadequate  or deficient in D when, in fact, they are not."


Well, who do I listen to here? I really do want to get my recommended dose of the vitamin, especially since multiple sclerosis and the lack of D are so closely related. But how much is too much?

Well, since I have had a sneaking suspicion about my intake of D, I think I will work with Marchione's advice for a while and do a lower dose. It is a convenient time for me since my vitamin bottle is in need of a refill any way.

Now on to my second vitamin concern. B 12.

What do yo know about this energy enhancer? A former colleague of mind who suffers with Parkinson's Disease receives monthly B12 injections and swears by them in the progress of his disease. He has more energy and less shaking. 

After reading an assortment of testimonials written by fellow MS Warriors, I decided to conduct my own little experiment. B12 Adult Gummies seemed to be the popular alternative to the injections, so I began consuming the recommended two gummies a day. I really do not know nor does  it seem possible that they are the cause, but I have experienced horrible cramping in the toes and shins since I began my experiment. I decided to cut the dosage back to one a day with little change in my lower extremities. Today I took none and my legs feel much better. My walking gait is even better. Weird?
You bet.

So, without actual human consultation, I have (for now) decided against a continued use of B12.  I would love to hear your thoughts on this.

Have a great weekend. Happy Veteran's Day!
Lisa
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