I appreciated your recent article “Ask Science” (GT, 1/5) explaining the futility of taking “brain supplements” to increase cognitive performance. I would love GT to do another piece examining vitamin and mineral supplements. Do people really need to take these? Although a majority of Americans use supplements, and spend about $12 billion a year on them, unless a specific supplement is prescribed for you by your M.D. (such as a folic acid for pregnant women or vitamin D for those that get no sun exposure), in almost all cases taking vitamins or minerals provide no health benefits and is a waste of money. If a person eats a well-balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables there is no need to take supplements. Whole foods offer greater nutrition, essential fiber and protective substances that vitamins lack. Enjoy life: buy good food, not vitamins.
R. E. Rhodes
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