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975357 tn?1252704723

multivitamin causing itching?


I have been dealing with chronic itching all over my body (like not a spot spared, my fingers itch my toes, back, legs, arms and any other place you can think of). About 3 days ago, I had realized that I had run out of my once daily multi vit and hadn't been taking it for probably 2 weeks (yeah I know, slow on the uptake), but before I began taking it again 3 days ago I thought about it and realized "wait a minute, I haven't been itching & scratching all day like a chimp." (literally one night I came out of the shower crying because the itching was so bad, I am NOT one to shed tears easily, especially from itching!!)/

So anyway I have been taking it for 3 days and the itching has returned! Coincidence? Maybe, but I thought it warranted a post. Is there anything in multivites specifically known to cause chronic itching? I mean there are like a million things in this multivit (whoever heard if tin in a multivitamin? I didnt even know this was a trace mineral needed by the body-it is berkley & jensen brand from **'s wholesale-it's their store brand) and how do I know if it is an active ingredient, or some stupid filler? I took a snapshot of the ingredient and facts labels and they can be seen here: http://i247.photobucket.com/albums/gg145/cduval04/ingredients.jpg
and here: http://i247.photobucket.com/albums/gg145/cduval04/facts.jpg

I take 2000 iu of vitamin d in a separate supplement and also a b complex, any advice/suggestions/theories.personal experience stories would be very helpful!!

thanks in advance!
22 Responses
Avatar universal
You'd be surprised at what you can be allergic to!!  Just goes to show you that even things that are supposed to be GOOD for us or NATURAL can and sometimes do - cause problems.

Quite honestly, I don't know in your case - and it's probably virtually impossible for anyone to tell you what might be causing the itching, but I thougth I'd share something slightly similar that happened to me several years ago.  I was coming down with a cold and started taking those little zinc/vitamin c lozenges.  The next morning, I woke up covered in hives and itching like a crazy ape like you said - I was also having some difficulty breathing (I do have asthma) - because of the difficulty breathing, i made a trip to the ER where they loaded me up with steroids and benadryl and asked me if I had eaten or drank anything new in the past couple of days or if I was taking any new medication.  No on the food and drink, but told them about the zinc/vitamin C.  They said stop the lozenges, which I did.  It took a day or so for teh hives and itchiness to fully clear up.

The next time I started getting a cold, I tried JUST vitaminc C and made out fine - so I tried the zinc/vitamin C lozenges again and once again, broke out in hives and itching/difficulty breathing.  VOILA!!  I knew 100% that it was the zinc in the lozenge that I am allergic to.  I also had this type of reaction when I was taking a multivitamin following shoulder surgery (surgeon's suggestion as the extra vitamins were supposed to aid in healing) - and I didn't even think about there being zinc in them.  A few hours after my first vitamin, I again broke out in hives - I knew right then I had neglected to read the label for zinc, but knew what to do -- Benadryl to the rescue again!

So...... I'm not saying that zinc is the cuplrit in your case - but am saying that yes, it is possible to be allergic to something in the vitamins.  Unfortunately, without actual allergy testing and/or elmination of each ingredient one by one and then adding them back in one by one, it'll be difficult, if not impossible to determine exactly what part o fthe vitamin you're having trouble with.

Have you tried any other brands of mutli vitamins?  If so, did you have the same problem with them?  If you haven't tried another brand, you may think about doing that - that might possibly at least let you know whether it's an inactive ingredient/additive or whether it's one of the actual active vitamins/minerals as different brands quite often use different additives/inactive ingredients/

Other than that, maybe try some benadryl or other over the counter antihistamine along with the vitamin and see if tha tallows you to continue to take the one you like without all the itching.

Best of luck!  Let me know how it goes.
Avatar universal
I cannot take a regular multi-vitamin. why? It contains 'IRON" and I am
an Iron Diabetic, yes, iron diabetic..MOST NEVER HEARD OF THIS.
.I cannot  disorder) metabolize iron. Centrum Silver is the only vitamin I can take. One should not take IRON in a vitamin unless directed by your doctor. I didn't know I had this disorder...found out at age 65yrs. It's all of 'NORTHERN EUROPE" decendants...but most 'IRISH"...why it's called 'THE IRISH CURSE, & BRONZE DIABETES/CHANGES SKIN COLOR..
GO TO DR. OZ'S website, he'll state  what vitamins  and the quantity you should take per your age.
975357 tn?1252704723

yes I am of french Canadian and german descent. My skin is so sensitive to the point where it makes me REALLY annoyed....I put a heating blanket on for too long or take a hot shower, i get itchy red blotches, any puncture of my skin will leave a thick raised scar no matter how small....there is no tanning for me...I just burn like a lobster..I don't like sunlight for long periods of time it makes me itchy...I was dxed with "dermatographia" which essentially means "skin writing" if you scratch or slap my skin the mark will remain there for at least 30 min.....I have 19x the normal levels of antibodies to dust mites...and as I get older...my scalp gets itchier ....and my sinus congestion/rhinitis/asthma get worse...never used to be a problem....but I do have beautiful skin, it is just a pain in the behind....

I have heard of haemochromotosis and I know iron is eliminated from even a healthy body at a snails pace..(in your case not at all)..I think I heard doctor oz say u shouldnt have iron in your multi unless you are a female of childbearing age....that being said I take large doses of nsaids and eat a TON of garlic (for systemic candida) and I take large doses of valerian at night as well as ginger capsules for nausea...every single one of which can thin the blood...so I am always super cold anyway...but I was taking all these things during my "non itchy" period...so I think maybe I will swtich mvites and see what happens.....I havent had blood work in awhile (except thyroid which is always bouncing around and needs to be checked regularly), but my b12, platelets and hematocrit were all normal...RBC count has always been on the low end, I dunno I hate doctors. They dont test anything but the basics.....I hate to "ask" for specific tests b/c then it looks like I've been playing doctor (which I have b/c I dont get help) but I sorta "hint hint" and they never test things like mast cells, histamine, or adrenal hormones, probably because they are all to expensive.....but I will def. switch multis to a more basic, maybe veggie based one and see what happens...thanks!
Avatar universal
my husband was taking the one a day vitamins for men over  55 and started a rash and itching went to doctors who biopsyed it and said it was a drug related rash but couldnt find which one until like you we ran out and he noticed he stopped itching and the rash was gone. any suggestions for a new vitamin maybe the all natural ones thak youo
Avatar universal
I recently stopped taking a multi-vitamin and noticed so much itching on my arms, under my chin near the neck and the back of my neck. The arms give me my worst trouble though as there are small bumps...not pimples but bumps that are mildly hard and I've tried putting on some Gold Bond medicated lotion to help the itch...as it is temporary. I may need to get back to my allergist in the next few weeks if this itching and bumps does not subside. It itches crazy when I let warm to hot water touch my skin I have to bare it for a few seconds before the skin's itchy sensation dissipates. I think vitamins might still be inside my body and it takes a while to flush from the system. I think mine is a similar situation as far as a multi-vitamin goes.
Avatar universal
I believe that One a Day women is causing my severe itching.  I mean all over.  I'm severely itchy, it's disturbing my sleep and I've got scratches all over my back and legs and bumps on my arms, my face is itchy and I think I've been scratching in my sleep so the skin is now dry and bruised.  It is awful.  The only thing that helps is a cold pack.  I've been looking for what could cause my itching and just found your site.  I'm going to stop taking the vitamins and see if that works.
Avatar universal
Just a quick comment. I've been itching also since I've been taking these over 50 multivitamins.  I've never takin vitamins so I thought it was time.  But I'm going to stop myself and see if the itching and light spread rash goes away.  I'm gonna try the benedryl at lunch.  I'm itching crazy right now!!
STOP THE BENEDRYL! The E171 in it causes intense itching, even though BENEDRYL is meant to stop the itch very ironic I know!
Avatar universal
I wanted to respond to all of these posts and let you know some very helpful information that I learned. About a year ago, I started having terrible itching on my arms. A few weeks later, I started having "spells" where my arms would burn severely for a matter of about 10 seconds, then go numb. I researched the symptoms and saw a lot of posts about MS. Scared, I went to my primary care physician who sent me to a nuerologist. She did several test: an MRI of my brain to look for lesions that could show MS AND a FULL blood test. The MRI was clean, but the blood test showed that I had so much B6 in my body that I was toxic. The nuerologist explained that B6 can do very strange things when you absorb too much. Apparently, it became such an issue in Europe that the govn't considered regulating it. She told me to go home and look at EVERYTHING i take that could have B6 in it. You'll be shocked! There are huge doses in women's multivitamins because it makes you feel good. It's in protein shakes....everything! I had to stop take any type of multivitamin and take them all individually and in a few months when it was out of my system, the itching & episodes stopped. Be careful of this vitamin! While we all need it, we don't need the huge doses that are in many supplements.
Avatar universal
Thanks for your comment ! I started to take m v that builds nail and hair ,loaded with B6. I have had this itch on my forarms and neck after about 6 months from starting the vitamin. Finally put 1 and 1 together ,THANK YOU !
You saved me from more sleepless nights ...
Avatar universal
I started taking Zinc three days ago and notice I am itching all over. I will stop and see if that's my problem! I had an itching problem for years dr.s couldn't figure out what it was. I finally found something on the internet that said vit B 12 deficiency can cause itching! I started on the sublingual B12 the itching stopped until I took zinc! Wow I hope I have figured it out again!
Avatar universal
I think most allergies are a symptom of a weak immunity system.  I had severe hives for 8 years that the M.D.s could not figure out at all. I'd break out 3 days a week and in 30 minutes it would take over my entire body.

Then 4 years ago I came across Low Dose Naltrexone, (LDN) 4.5 mg /night + 600 mg/day of Alpha Lipoic Acid Antioxidant.. Search youtube to watch the research M.D.s discuss using this since 1985 for AIDS and Cancer patents.. It resets you immunity to optimize it.. It increases it 300% with no side effects and cost $1/day !

I have had no hives or colds since being on LDN.  
Actually, your immune system has nothing to do with certain skin related allergies. Your liver, if it can't process the substance, will release histamines and attempted to rid the toxins from your body through other means such as your skin.
Avatar universal
I'm glad i finally google searched 'itching from zinc', because i would've never suspected it until reading your post. The thing is that, I had been taking this supplement for awhile before i even started to have an issue. As a matter of fact, i'm still skeptical, but there is still a possibility it's potency falls in the borderline excessive range for my body's limits. I suppose there's a possibility that the problem stemmed from me accidentally taking two supplements with both containing zinc without me realizing it at first. Maybe it caused my body to become more sensitive to zinc now, and it just built up too much inside my body, and it couldn't process it. Regardless, i'm throwing that one out. The daily value doesn't seem to correlate with each other. Apparently they are two different types of zinc, so maybe they interacted with each other in a bad way. I had the same symptoms as you, and yes, benadryl did the trick every time.
Avatar universal
Sassygrin, can you update us on your itching problem. You know, zinc might be our problem, but it may not be. Could be laundry detergent allergy, stress, and possibly an issue with our intestines (like too much gluten). We need to figure this out though.
10854229 tn?1413314136
Hello cduval04  

Some times chronic itching all over your body can have something to do with your blood. ask your Dr about this he can give you a blood test to see if There's anything eel's causing This  you  other then an Allergy

Chronic itching all over The body sounds more like you need to have your blood check.. Some times an allergens can mask other things that is going on I seen the show one time were this person was itching all over it was not a allergy  but this person was suffering from anther illness  with caused her hole body to  itch....good luck
Avatar universal
My itching was defininantly related to a zinc overdose, and it threw me back into my anemia, I was full of hives, vomitting and just exhausted.  I realized I was taking 75 mg of zinc for 2 days. YEAH. Don't do that. I stopped the zinc supplements and realized the zinc I get through food was plenty. My 75 mgs was 35mgs higher than the max dose recommended! Yikes.
Avatar universal
I started taking vit b 12 two weeks ago and im itching all over. It must be  the vitamin! im stopping it today after reading this ..
Avatar universal
My son broke out into hives after taking Vitafusion multivite gummies..this is the only brand that broke him out.
Avatar universal
I guess your problem is FD&C Yellow # 6 Lake. I don't know if I am too late and you will never see this response. If you ever happen to glance here I would like to point out one thing that probably even you doctors have overlooked. Your multivitamin has something which is neither a mineral nor a vitamin but just an added substance. Lo and behold that added substance is a known offender!
Your symptoms match with this and if you happens to take any other drug you much check the label carefully to avoid sunset yellow aka FD&C Yellow #6 aka E110.
Avatar universal
I took B Complex 3 days ago... The next day I was itching to the point where I couldnt sleep. I didnt realize till today and not being able to sleep the 2nd night that it must have been the vitamin. Still itching like crazy... I hope it goes away soon. Is there any treatments for it to stop sooner?
Avatar universal
Check for PABA. It causes bad itching and can be found in fine print for ingredients or for added ingredients.
Avatar universal
Definitely yes!!! You have been taking vit B complex which causes itching if you take too much Niacin, B12 & Vit D more than your body needs.. which creates an overdose causing itching and sometimes skin conditions like, hives, eczema etc. Stop all the vit supplements Immediately! You will see that  the itch will disappear!
Avatar universal
Hi, I wanted to respond! Years ago I took an all natural vitamin supplement from a health food store. It was a powder with green fillers. I itched like crazy!
Last week I bought a natural multivitamin for women at Trader Joe's, in pill form, They were out of the other, less expensive Women's formula I get there. Well, the natural one made from "Organic whole foods" made my hands itch the first day. The second day was a little better... but the third day! My hands, arms, and feet itched!! There is something in the whole food aspect of it. Don't know if its grasses or what, but I'm going to see if Traders will trade it in for the other kind.
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