The body needs vitamins and minerals to maintain healthy, but when a person consumes too much of a good thing, this can cause dangerous side effects.
- Calcium - recommended daily dose of calcium varies with age, but people between 19 and 60 years require between 1,000 and 1,200 mg per day. If taken more than 2,000 mg daily, calcium can become dangerous. Drug overdose symptoms include lethargy, assimilation disorders of zinc, iron and magnesium, and impaired kidney function.
- Iodine - recommended daily dose of iodine is 150 mcg (micrograms), which means half a teaspoon a day. While iodine is necessary for the welfare of the thyroid gland but taken in large quantities of two milligrams or more per day, it can stop functioning thyroid gland. Other symptoms of drug overdose with iodine are gaining weight, metallic taste in the mouth, dry skin and hair, irritation, diarrhea, vomiting, swelling of the mouth, headaches, breathing difficulties and excessive menstrual bleeding.
- Iron - iron is an important mineral but taken in quantities too large can cause dangerous side effects. Recommended daily iron intake varies depending on age:
-from 14 to 18 years of age: up to 15 mg per day
-from 19 to 50 years: 8 mg per day for men, and 18 mg per day for women
-from 51 years in top: 8 mg a day for men and women
Excess of 25 mg/day of iron can lead to headaches, weight loss, fatigue, deficiencies and problems of the heart, liver and pancreas. Iron supplements should not be taken unless prescribed by the doctor.
- Selenium - recommended daily dose of selenium is 40 mg a day for children aged between nine and 13 years and 55 mcg per day for persons aged over 14 years. Taken in excess of 750 mcg per day, selenium may cause hair loss, weakening of the immune system, damage to the teeth, face, weakness, pale skin, yellow shade of skin lesions, low energy and diabetes.
- Zinc - zinc may never be taken in excess of 75 mg or more per day, unless it is prescribed by the doctor. Recommended daily dose of zinc for adults is 11 milligrams for men and 8 mg for women. Excessive amounts of zinc can cause vomiting, nausea, changes in cholesterol levels, low immune system, anemia, abdominal pain and stomach bleeding. Excess zinc in pregnant women can cause fetal intrauterine and premature death.
It is always recommended to take vitamins and minerals through a balanced and healthy diet. Supplements should be taken only if they are prescribed by the doctor. There is truth in saying “what’s too much hurts”. Eat healthy and avoid taking large quantities of vitamins or minerals.