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A doctor has issued a cautionary message against taking four specific supplements, emphasizing potential health risks rather than benefits. Dr. Charles MD, a New York-based physician with a significant TikTok following, singled out Vitamins A and E, along with iron and biotin, in a video addressed to his 1.7 million followers.

Vitamin A, crucial for vision, immune system function, and skin health, can accumulate in the body and lead to liver damage, warns Dr. Charles. A British Dietetic Association spokesperson, Nichola Ludlam-Raine, supports this caution, especially for pregnant women, as high doses of retinol (a form of Vitamin A) may result in birth defects.

The second supplement on the doctor’s list is Vitamin E, essential for skin, eye health, and immune system support. Dr. Charles contends that, despite its antioxidant properties, Vitamin E has been linked to higher cancer rates. Nichola advises careful consideration, especially for those on blood-thinning medications, as excessive Vitamin E intake can elevate the risk of bleeding.

Biotin, or Vitamin B7, is the third supplement discussed. Dr. Charles discourages its supplementation due to potential interference with lab tests, asserting that it’s unnecessary for hair and nails. Nichola recommends discontinuing biotin three days before a blood test, as high levels can impact results.

Iron, the final supplement mentioned, is deemed necessary only when prescribed by a doctor. Dr. Charles warns that taking iron without specific medical advice can potentially harm the heart. Nichola supports this, emphasizing the importance of medical supervision to prevent iron toxicity.

In contrast, Nichola suggests that, for most individuals, there is only one essential vitamin supplement required for a limited period – 10mcg of vitamin D during winter months. She emphasizes the importance of caution, advocating for a pharmacist’s advice to understand potential risks and contraindications.

While supplements can be beneficial, Nichola underscores the need for appropriate usage to avoid potential risks. The NHS website provides extensive information on vitamins, supplements, and guidelines for handling excessive intake.

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