This was an interesting question that patients of mine ask me regularly.  Should you take Vitamins or not?  Many would argue that Vitamins are not needed if you have a balanced diet.  I agree. 
The problem is that most “balanced diets” are not nearly as balanced as you would think.  Eating your fresh fruits and vegetables daily may still leave you deficient in key trace elements like Selenium and Chromium.

Balanced Diet
For example, the WHOLE ISLAND of New Zealand has literally not one atom of Selenium.  Therefore, anything that is grown in New Zealand, has no Selenium in it.  This is why so many of the Maori Natives from New Zealand have a short stature and a history of thyroid disorders.  Selenium is known to be critical to the production of thyroid hormone in your body – a key element to proper metabolism and immune system function.
Our Fruits and Vegetables are increasingly grown in lands far away in soil that is over-farmed and not allowed to rest for decades as used to be the “standard” in agriculture.  This means that the Chromium and Selenium and other trace elements you should expect to get from your fruits and veggies – may not be there!  In fact, this is also the case for many other vitamins.  Tomatoes, for example, are most often picked green and then shipped for 100’s or perhaps 1000’s of miles before they end up in a “ripening facility”.
Ripening Tomatoes
 In the ripening facilities, the tomatoes are exposed to Ethylene Gas which is a plant hormone that forces a ripening process and which turns the green tomatoes red.  They rarely have a nice flavour and are definitely missing many of the key nutritional items and vitamins that are contained in “vine ripened” tomatoes.  If you can buy them from a locally grown Farmer’s Market, then all the better for you.  If you can’t – you should consider a good quality Vitamin Supplement.
I have spent years researching Vitamins in great depth, including where and how they are manufactured. I lot of what I learned was disturbing. Many Vitamins are manufactured from source material that comes from rural China and other heavily polluted environments.
Chinese Farm Pollution
Agricultural Pollution
Lots of Vitamins also contain large amounts of fillers and are huge and difficult to swallow.
Vitamin Size Comparison
JP Vitale is a tiny #3 E-Z Swallow Capsule
The best supplement I was able to come up with is JP Vitale. It is made by a Canadian Company in the USA, and only uses source materials from the USA or Canada that are all certified to be pure and free of contaminants. Each ingredient in the Multivitamin is vetted through Physician peer-reviewed journals. The Vitamin is tiny, easy to swallow and only needs to be taken once per day. It is packed with anti-oxidants like Lutein and Lycopene and also has difficult to find trace elements like Chromium and Selenium.
The Product is called JP Vitale and is available in the USA through AMAZON and at Pharmacies listed on the JP Vitale website.
Your feedback is always appreciated!
Should I Take a Vitamin? Which Vitamin is the best?

Dr. John Fernandes

B.Sc., M.Sc., M.D., LMCC, CCFP, FCPC Clinical Lecturer, University of Calgary I am a Physician with over a decade of experience in my own Private Clinic as well as a full admitting Physician to a Tertiary Care Hospital in Calgary. Married with two daughters that both want to be Physicians as well. Hobbies include skiing, golf, mountain biking and Karate.

2 thoughts on “Should I Take a Vitamin? Which Vitamin is the best?

  • August 4, 2015 at 9:19 PM

    Could you please comment on the absence of Calcium in this pill? Thank you.

    • February 14, 2016 at 3:13 AM

      Taking calcium is increasingly controversial. There is an increasing incidence of kidneys stones, especially in women. Taking extra supplemental calcium may be one of the causes of this. Normal dietary calcium from sources like broccoli and dairy are probably enough for good health and the prevention of osteoporosis. Thank-you!


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