While we’re talking about the whole getting-into-your-forties-gracefully thing, I should get a word in about vitamins or supplements, which remain something that a) someone in their 20s thinks is insane, and b) someone in their 40s will think is a waste of time until they truly start believing there’s a shot at extending their stay on the planet.
My biggest problem about supplements is not the cost (which can be prohibitive), or if they work, but just remembering to take the fuckers every day. And if the supplement demands to be taken more than once a day, I find it offensive. A life that demands shark cartilage capsules every four hours is a life that doesn’t deserve lasting longer.
The misinformation and hype around vitamins and supplements isn’t much better than it was on the Oregon Trail circa 1842, and it tends to originate from some pretty desperate websites and un-rigorous anecdotal evidence screamed in comment sections. Which leads you to Wikipedia or medicine journals, written in language you can’t possibly fathom (check out Wikipedia’s entry on the popular N-A-C supplement).
Thank god for the internet; it views such deficiencies as a virus and works around it. Behold the best graph I’ve seen on the subject yet… the size of the circle is determined by Google hit popularity, and the closer the circle is to the top, the more scientific evidence that it works:
But this is just a snapshot for today. Click on the image itself for the interactive version, updated all the time, with all the relevant info ported into the graph as it comes through trial studies. Kudos to the fine folks at Information is Beautiful – actually putting in a “worth it” line? Brilliant!