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Multivitamins cause elevated liver enzymes?

Hi all,

My question is could I still take multivitamins as it have iron in it and currently my recent blood test shows elevated liver enzymes . I am currently taking 5 pills
1 multivitamin
1vit c
1milk thistle
1fish oil
. does taking too much supplements cause liver problems?
2 Responses
Avatar universal
It depends on the supplements, but none of the ones you're taking should do it.  You don't say which multivitamin you're taking, and some companies aren't very good.  Milk thistle isn't an herb you take regularly, you only take it when you want to treat certain liver problems.  There are supplements that can cause liver problems -- standardized kava has been implicated, for example, in 5 cases, though the evidence isn't great it's generally bad for the liver given they drink it daily in Polynesia and have no such problem, but they don't use the standardized version.   Taking too many Chinese supplements can be a problem, as they have developed problems with unscrupulous suppliers including liver toxic contaminants -- some of the highest levels of severe liver disease in the US are in the Chinese community.  But you're not taking those supplements.   One way to find out if you're buying low quality and therefore possibly tainted supplements is to stop taking all your supplements and see if in a month or so the problem is gone.   My guess, though, is the problem lies elsewhere.  It could also be a one-time anomaly.  Do you take any medications or use street drugs or alcohol?
I have elevated liver enzymes and high cholesterol
Avatar universal
I am using all  blackmores vitamins and supplements i guess its from australia. I am in singapore and it does goes through our authorities
I'm in the US and have never heard of the brand, so I can't comment on the quality.  You'll have to ask someone over there about that.  As I said, you shouldn't take milk thistle daily -- you use it when you need to cleanse your liver or protect against something and when you're done you stop taking it.  There are liver protective supplements you can take regularly, such as alpha lipoic acid, turmeric, dandelion root, and a whole lot of other herbs -- you'd have to do some research by buying a good herbal to learn more about it, or just go to a health foods store and read the ingredients of various liver supplements.  I don't know what going through "authorities" means -- in the US the gov't does not get much involved in anything but pharmaceutical products.  I suspect the same is true in Australia.  I don't know anything about Singapore except that it's a much more authoritarian gov't system but that doesn't mean its better or worse on this subject.  I'm still going with something else being the problem, and if you have high cholesterol and don't have a genetic predisposition to it -- do you have a family history of liver or cholesterol problems? -- it suggests your diet needs a lot of work.  But don't worry too much if this is just from one blood test -- the next one could be very different.
Oh, and iron has nothing to do with the liver or cholesterol, but it can be harmful to the heart especially of men if you take too much.  Most multivitamins not only have very little iron, but if it's not a very high quality company the iron probably isn't going to be well-absorbed anyway.
Oh, and you haven't said if you're on any medications.  You don't take milk thistle if you're on medication, because the body usually thinks they're toxic and milk thistle can cause the liver to reject the medication.  Also, most medication is liver toxic to some degree.
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