Giving Multivitamins a Try

I continue to try to improve my health in ways that aren’t too hard. (How’s that for a goal?) Meaning I’m not exactly running marathons here or going to the gym. I’m eating less, reducing my sweets, jogging in place at lunch, lifting a few weights while I watch Netflix. I’m sneaking healthy stuff into my life to make it have as low of an impact as possible.

Why? Because so far this has been the only approach that seems to work with me. I’ve tried becoming a person who Goes to a Gym. In the process, I’ve discovered I’m actually one of the people who Goes to a Gym for a Week, and then gives up on the goal. It’s just too much to add it into my schedule. (Translation: I don’t value it enough to make time for it.) I’ve tried getting exercise equipment for home. I don’t use it. (I only seem to make time for exercise if it’s time I’m using to do something else anyway. Like watching Netflix.)

But I’ve been feeling healthier, and I think it’s helping me each day, so I continue to look for other ways I can do simple things to be a healthier me.

Next up? Multivitamins.

I’ve tried multivitamins in the past. (Maybe 10 years ago?) They didn’t seem to do much for me back then. I took them daily, and didn’t feel like I noticed much of a difference. (At the time, I felt rotten. I hoped they’d help with that. They didn’t, but I was also about 50 pounds overweight, had a horrible sleep schedule, never exercised, and ate brownies like they were the fifth food group. So I’m saying it might not have been the multivitamin’s fault.)

But the other day, I was reading a study that said getting enough vitamin D reduces colds and flus by 50% in people who were vitamin D deficient. It noted that most people get enough vitamin D through enriched milk and sunshine. Well, I don’t get a whole lot of sunshine. I’m a librarian author. Neither one of those activities does too well in the outdoors. So I’m pretty sure I’m not getting D’d up with sunshine. When it comes to milk, we get ours from a local farm. I don’t believe it’s fortified. So it wasn’t a huge stretch to think maybe I wasn’t getting enough vitamin D.

This made me think: might there be other vitamins I’m not getting enough of? Denisa often points out to me how limited my diet is. (I’m a creature of habit. I eat plain oatmeal with a few raisins and milk in the morning, a banana at 11, a peanut butter sandwich at noon, and something different for dinner each day. Not a whole ton of veggies, though I try to have some.) Again, it wouldn’t take a genius to see that I ought to be branching out. I’ve known that for quite some time, but old habits are hard to break.

So I decided I wouldn’t just take a vitamin D supplement. I’d hedge my bets and take a multivitamin. It was $6 for like 100 of the things. What could it hurt?

Two weeks in, I’m feeling pretty good about the decision. I take one each day after breakfast. I’ve felt like I’ve had more energy and been more alert each day. There’s been some sickness running through the family, and I haven’t caught it (yet). This is enough of a result for me to want to keep taking the multivitamin.

Could it be the placebo effect? Yup. But studies also indicate the placebo effect can work, even when you know what you’re taking is a placebo. Go figure.

For me, it breaks down to taking a pill each morning and spending about $20/year. Even if that only makes me feel 1% better than I feel without taking it, that seems  like a complete no brainer. (After all, by that math, I’d feel 100% better by spending just $2,000/year!) The only way I’d stop taking it is if it made me feel worse. No sign of that yet, so my lazy approach to a healthy lifestyle continues . . .

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