Question: I’m 58 and try to stay fit through proper eating and vitamins. But all the claims and hype are confusing. After I take all my supplements, I often wonder if there will be room for breakfast! They’re costly, too. What’s your recommendation for a reasonable regimen of vitamins for guys our age? — Ron M.
Coach Fred Matheny Replies: You may have asked the wrong guy, Ron. I guess you could call me a vitamin heretic. I take a simple one-a-day multiple vitamin that I buy at the supermarket. That’s it for pills, although I do eat vitamin-fortified cereal and orange juice most mornings. I try to eat a healthful diet with lots of fruit, vegetables and whole grains along with sufficient protein from lean meat.
I don’t see much reason to take the latest “miracle supplement” or extra doses of this orthat vitamin because I’ve yet to see independent research that proves it’ll do any good.
Of course, you won’t hear that from manufacturers or marketers. When a study does indicate potential benefits, companies are quick to hype the “scientific proof.” An example is the enthusiasm for chromium a few years back. Some studies found that it helped add lean body mass. When follow-up studies didn’t confirm that, the news didn’t get quite the same attention.
In fact, studies are often funded by supplement makers. What’s the likelihood of honest, unbiased results?
Sorry, I’m not falling for it. I’ll continue to make food my main source of vitamins and minerals, and use the multi as low-cost insurance.