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What is vitamin toxicity?

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enotes | Valedictorian

Posted April 8, 2014 at 8:15 PM via web

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What is vitamin toxicity?

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sciencesolve | Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

Posted April 10, 2014 at 5:45 AM (Answer #1)

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Vitamin toxicity, also called hypervitaminosis, is a condition in which the amount of vitamins stored in our body overpasses the normal recommended level of vitamins, poisoning the body.

Usually, since the water soluble vitamins (B6, B12, Biotin, Folic Acid, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Niacin, Vitamin C, Pantothenic Acid) are not stored in our body and the extra amounts are excreted as waste, they do not present a high level of risk for our health. On the other hand, the fat soluble vitamins, A,D,E,K, are stored for a longer time in our body, mainly in fatty tissues and liver, and taking supplements that contain large amount of these vitamins can lead to a high level of toxicity. Some health problems can affect the absorption of fats in organism, hence decreasing the absorption of fat soluble vitamins. A professional medical consult can establish the health problem and the appropriate intake amounts of fat soluble vitamins.

The extra amounts of each fat soluble vitamin can lead to the following symptoms, such that:

- extra amount of vitamin A: headache, loss of appetite, nausea, blurred vision, dizziness, risk of hip fracture, severe birth defects, itchy and dry skin.

- extra amounts of vitamin D: extra amount of calcium detected in blood, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, slowed mental and physical development.

- extra amount of vitamin E: hazardous effects on patients that take warfarin and statins

- extra amounts of vitamin K: liver damage, change of blood clotting times, red blood cells disintegration.

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