Tuesday, December 15, 2015

What Vitamins Should I Take?

 Even if you have the best dietary intentions, you may not be receiving all of the nutrients that your body needs. Taking vitamin and mineral supplements is a safe and effective way to correct nutritional deficiencies. The best way to get the nutrients your body needs is through food; however, many people do not eat a well-balanced diet. When this occurs, a vitamin and mineral supplement will ensure your body is receiving the nutrients it needs to prevent disease and function properly.

According to health.com, Americans are not receiving the recommended daily value of a variety of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin D, vitamin C, vitamin B12 and Folic acid. In addition to these vitamins, you may wish to supplement your diet with the following vitamins and minerals: beta carotene, calcium and iron. 

Beta Carotene
Beta carotene, is found in red, yellow and orange vegetables, such as sweet potatoes and carrots. Beta carotene is an antioxidant that protects against free radical damage. This antioxidant helps reduce asthma symptoms, improves vision and may prevent certain cancers. 

Calcium, found in dairy products, is needed for strong bones and healthy teeth. Taking a calcium supplement is often needed for those with milk allergies or those who are lactose intolerant. Vitamin D helps the body absorb and utilize calcium. In addition to milk products, calcium can be found in dark green leafy vegetables and sardines. 

Vitamin D 
Vitamin D is known as the sunshine vitamin because most people’s vitamin D requirements are provided by sun exposure. Without ample amounts of vitamin D, the body is unable to absorb calcium properly. Additionally, vitamin D helps prevent osteoporosis and may reduce the risk of multiple sclerosis and diabetes. 

Vitamin C 
Vitamin C is found in a variety of fruits and vegetables, including citrus fruits, berries and cruciferous vegetables. Vitamin C helps bolster the immune system, improves cardiovascular functions and helps with a variety of psychological issues, including ADHD, depression and anxiety. Finally, vitamin C improves vision health, lung health and dental health. 

Vitamin B12
Vitamin B12 is found in animal products, such as fish, dairy products and meat. Vitamin B12 is necessary for the development of nerve cells, blood cells and brain development. Additionally, vitamin B12 can boost the mood, prevent memory loss and slow down the signs of aging. This powerful vitamin also helps prevent macular degeneration, kidney disease and skin disorders. 

Folic acid
Low levels of Folic acid can cause anemia and nutritional deficiencies. Those who have a deficiency of Folic acid may experience liver disease, kidney problems and ulcerative colitis. Folic acid can be found in fortified breads, cereals and flours. Natural sources of Folic acid are leafy vegetables, bananas, melons and organ meats.

The mineral iron is found in the hemoglobin and is used to transport oxygen to the cells. Iron is found in beans, chicken, fish, pork and beef. Iron deficiency can cause anemia. It may help treat ADHD, Chrohn’s disease and depression. Menstruating women may need to supplement their diets with an iron supplement. 

You can protect your health by eating a diet rich in vitamins and minerals. However, many times you will need a complement to your diet with vitamin and mineral supplements. The most common vitamins and minerals that need to be supplemented include folic acid, iron, calcium,vitamin B12, vitamin C, and vitamin D.