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Panel slams Vitamin D supplement dose recommendations

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A governmental advisory panel's finding that low doses of vitamin D and calcium don't necessarily help post-menopausal women has many patients feeling confused.

For years, pregnant or post-menopausal were told that taking calcium and vitamin D would help strengthen bones, but the U.S. Preventative Service Task Force says that though some studies link the supplements to reducing cancer, taking the vitamins in the recommended doses is pointless.

The panel took a hard look at prevention efforts and found that no research shows that the typical dosage -- which is 400 international units -- does anything at all.

A nutritionist and a doctor told FOX 9 News that's likely because if someone is deficient on calcium or vitamin D, they'd need to take a lot more to make a difference.

"The dosing is insufficient, and this is key for Minnesotans to know," said Dr. Greg Plotnikoff, who is sort of an evangelist when it comes to getting enough vitamin D. "A multivitamin is just better that worthless for achieving a good vitamin D level."

As owner of Nutritional Weight and Wellness -- where they sell vitamin D in doses that clime to thousands of international units, Darlene Kvist isn't surprised either.

"We agree with [the panel]," she said. "We've been telling our clients this for a long time."

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