Upper Limits

3.2 Contents of vitamins and minerals
3.2.2 Maximum amounts of vitamins and minerals in vitamin and mineral food supplements per daily portion of consumption as recommended by the manufacturer shall be set, taking the following criteria into account:

(a) upper safe levels of vitamins and mineral established by scientific risk assessment based on generally accepted scientific data, taking into consideration, as appropriate, the varying degrees of sensitivity of different consumer groups;

(b) the daily intake of vitamins and minerals from other dietary sources.

When the maximum levels are set, due account may be taken of the reference intake values of vitamins and minerals for the population. This provision should not lead to setting of maximum levels that are solely based on recommended nutritient intakes (e.g. Population Reference Intake or Recommended Daily Allowance values).

There is a large range between what different countries view as a safe and a dangerous dosage for individual vitamins and minerals. Codex Guidelines are taking over international control for determining what will prevail. Is this going to be done with an open mind or with a pre-determined outcome?

What if the goal is to determine the maximum dose of a particular nutrient “that potentially susceptible individuals could take daily on a life-long basis, without medical supervision in reasonable safety?” What if any benefits of these nutrients was not to be factored in? What if research proving high safe levels is to be ignored?

The IADSA Summary of Vitamin and Mineral Recommended nutrient intakes compares what levels are considered appropriate intake per day, as determined by the FAO/WHO, European Union, and the U.S.
FAO/WHO: RNIs (Recommended Nutrient Intakes)

EU SCR: PRIs (Population Reference Intakes)
US FNB: DRIs (Dietary Reference Intakes)

Safe Upper Limits for Nutritional Supplements: One Giant Step BACKWARD

Dr. Schaller Opposes Simplistic Nutrient “Upper Limits” By National & International Groups

July 1, 2005: The Day CODEX Will Protect You From High-Dose Dietary Supplements

Upper Safety Limits for Vitamins — Why Have Different Authorities Set Different Guidance?

NOTE: The 3.2.2 FINAL designation of the upper limit allowed in a vitamin or mineral supplement project will be a result of three stages.

  • Risk assessment to set safe upper limit
  • Lower to allow for expected amount from daily diet
  • Adjust further to allow for general population needs

Some fear that there is potential for manipulation of the “science” used to reach a low dosage result, such as referenced in Dishonest Medical Research – Will Transparency Bring Integrity?

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This Codex Section was restructured in June 2005. This specific page was last updated September 2014.

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