The red pill or the blue pill. Is it worth taking a Multivitamin for CFS/ME? ~ Treatment

multivitamin cartoon

Colorful? Yep. Potent? Probably. Natural? Not so sure. Good for you? You be the judge.

What are they: Multivitamin & mineral supplements are a mixture of nutrients designed to make you feel alive. They come in different forms including powder, capsules and pills and are usually designed to be taken once a day.

Why take them: Firstly, it’s important to remember that all of these nutrients are available through eating the right foods. However the theory goes that CFS’ers are not correctly absorbing many of these nutrients (through faulty genes or problems with digestion) and that due to being unwell people with CFS/ME require much higher amounts nutrients in the first place, so they must provide higher doses through supplementation to meet these needs.

It is also claimed that modern farming practices (pesticides, fertilizers, soil degradation etc.) have reduced the levels of vitamins and minerals (especially magnesium) in our food so we must supplement to stay healthy.

How much should I take? Usually one dose per day as directed on the label. Ongoing supplementation can be quite expensive so carefully weigh up the cost versus the benefit after trialling it for a few months.

My Experience: (2010) Having investigated a while back I originally chose to trial Dr Teitelbaums Energy Revitalisation. I was pretty suspicious as he developed and markets the product, but also states that he doesn’t accept royalties from the sales. I can’t know for sure but choose to believe him based on all his work with CFS/ME. It was very sweet and synthetic mixture so I stopped taking it pretty quickly.

(January 2011) I then ended up trialling a whole range of different multivitamins settling on Hypomultiple for a while as my Doctor stocked it, it was comprehensive and it was cheaper than the rest.

(November 2011) I got tired of Hypomultiple and started looking for the most natural and organic alternative I could find. I eventually decided instead to focus on improving my diet while specifically targeting any nutritional deficiencies evident in my blood tests with individual supplements. I was having Epsom salt baths, high doses of vitamin C and taking a supplement to increase my magnesium levels. I personally more enjoyable and natural alternative to a daily multivitamin is having a green superfood smoothie each day.

 Links: Dr Sarah Myhill puts forward the case for daily supplementation here. She is definitely in the tonnes of supplements at once camp (I’m a little over this right now) but claims to have had good results and appears genuinely committed to helping people recover as quick as possible.

Wikipedia also has a good article on whether multivitamins are effective.

Got some insight on Multivitamins? Think its worth the cost?

Post a comment below and let us know!

Where to Next?

Already had your Green Smoothie for breakfast?

Then why not top it off with a little Probiotic Yoghurt or even a FIR Sauna?

6 Responses to The red pill or the blue pill. Is it worth taking a Multivitamin for CFS/ME? ~ Treatment
  1. Marina Sourke
    November 22, 2011 | 3:09 pm

    I tried the Dr Myhill supplement regime for a year and all I got was a big hole in my savings! The most relevant thing to controlling major crashes in my case is avoiding extreme stressors.

    • Joe
      November 22, 2011 | 3:16 pm

      Hey Marina. Thanks for the word up. It’s pricy and hard work eating all those supplements hey? But I know people that have done very well on Myhills program so again its each to their own it seems. I hear you on the stressors front, this is important for me as well.

  2. amy southorn
    November 24, 2011 | 9:16 am

    Tricky subject hey. I have gone through so many stages with supplementation. Initially my regime set by my doc was similar to Dr Myhills but even MORE supps. I don’t think I was absorbing much! and I did not improve. I am very similar to you in what you currently do, although I do still take quite a lot of supplements at least I know I need them. I have never taken a multi though, the best ones seem to be whole food supps or go a green smoothie like you say!

    • Joe
      November 28, 2011 | 6:08 am

      Haha always a giggle showing guests my ‘vitamin corner’ in the kitchen. I’m sure you can relate. A few of them ask if I’m hosting an army of pensioners in my basement…. Re-assuring to see that most of us seem to end up on a similar wavelength after a while. Suggests we are on the right track to me. Or all equally deluded :p But I don’t think thats the case!

  3. Simon
    February 26, 2012 | 10:33 pm

    Hi joe…

    So dare i ask, why are you not on the Myhill programme if you know people who have done well on it?


    • Joe
      February 29, 2012 | 12:03 pm

      Hiya Simon. Always ask, knowledge is power :) I am on a broadly individualised version of the Myhill program, in that I think nutrition, pacing and supplements all play a valuable part in your recovery. Myhill is great and her free book and website opened my eyes to many new possibilities and approaches. Good luck with it! J :)

Leave a Reply

Wanting to leave an <em>phasis on your comment?

Trackback URL
Welcome! I'm Joe and my vision is to empower people with the knowledge they need to take control of their health. I was diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS/ME) in 2003 and recently added Lyme disease to that diagnosis in 2012. I'm on a path to recovery and I invite you to join me..... P.S. It's best to never take anything I say too seriously. In fact I reckon it's best to never take anything too seriously!