In an ideal world, you'd receive your nutrients from the food to eat. But living in a perfect world may not be possible for those with a hectic lifestyle and too busy to eat healthily. The truth is that multivitamins help us stay strong and fit and get all the nutrients we need to avoid illness.
During the flu season, we want to boost our immune system to avoid coming down with a nasty bug. Certain life factors, such as menopause, pregnancy, and chronic conditions, may make supplementation necessary. Or you want to maintain optimal health. Regardless of why you choose to pop a multivitamin, you may wonder, "What vitamins should I take daily?" In this article, we'll go over the vitamins your body needs.
Nicknamed the sunshine vitamin, vitamin D is an essential vitamin that plays a vital role in absorbing calcium. In a few minutes per day, you can soak up some rays to help produce vitamin D. Although the truth is that 40% of Americans don't receive enough vitamin D each day. (1) Who has enough time to sit in the sun? Also, a lot of people wear sunscreen to protect themselves from the sun's harmful rays.
The combination of little time and sun cancer worries limits the amount of vitamin D soaked up each day. When you have a vitamin D deficiency, you may develop bone and back pain, experience hair loss, and increase the chances of becoming ill. Taking a high-quality vitamin D cream may be the solution.
Vitamin B12 is a water-soluble, essential vitamin that's integral for healthy red cell production. You derive the vitamin from consuming animal-based products, such as chicken, beef, eggs, and milk. However, if you're a vegan, vegetarian, or unable to synthesize vitamin B12 due to a health condition, you may be deficient. Another factor that may result in low levels is interactions with some medications, pregnant, or breastfeeding. (2)
People usually derive their daily vitamin B12 dose through foods, but sometimes it can be hard to get what you need. When this happens, you may develop the following symptoms:
Vitamin C supplementation has always been super popular for keeping your body in top shape. It's a water-soluble vitamin that supports your immune system, collagen production, and antioxidant defense. When you're sick, stores of vitamin C quickly become depleted.
You can find vitamin C in certain foods like kale, broccoli, and red bell peppers. If you cook vitamin C-rich foods, it can significantly lower the amount of vitamin C. (3) If you consume a diet low in fruits and vegetables, you may develop scurvy. Symptoms of scurvy are feeling fatigued and weak.
Magnesium is an essential compound that comes from eating a healthy diet. It aids many critical bodily functions, including:
Many people are magnesium deficient from consuming a poor diet. (4) The best way to solve this problem is to increase the intake of magnesium-rich foods, such as pumpkins, beans, and tofu. You can also use a magnesium cream supplement.
Folate or vitamin B9 is an essential vitamin important for fetal development. (5) It helps prevent congenital disabilities and lowers cancer risks. It can also help you grow your nails, fight depression, and reduce inflammation.
Many people are calcium deficient, leading to weak bones and possibly osteoporosis. (6) You gain calcium from the foods you eat, but a poor diet leads to calcium deficiency.
Women, in particular, are more susceptible, and as they age lose calcium, leading to weak bones. You can eat calcium-rich foods like milk, cheese, and yogurt. Calcium-fortified foods are a good option, too.
Zinc is a mineral that helps our immune system. If you're stressed, you tend to have lower levels of zinc. It's also essential for injury recovery and DNA production. If you're zinc deficient, you may have a hard time producing healthy new cells.
Your body doesn't store zinc, so choosing a multivitamin with it included will help ensure you get your daily dose. Also, add more zinc-rich foods, such as grass-fed beef, brown rice, and spinach into your diet.
For those who eat red meat, you typically receive enough iron. But if you're pregnant, in adolescence, or a vegan or vegetarian, you may not be receiving enough iron. You can eat iron-rich foods like shellfish, spinach, or liver to boost levels. Iron can help you have more energy and better brain function. (7)
Biotin is a B-complex vitamin that is essential for taking the foods we eat and converting them into energy. It's also referred to as vitamin B7 or vitamin H. (8) Another critical facet of biotin is that it helps maintain healthy hair, skin, and nails. In the last few years, biotin supplements have become sought after for this reason.
If you have a biotin deficiency, you may develop hair loss, scaly skin, or high blood sugar. The best way to improve biotin levels is to eat a diet packed full of whole grains, eggs, and nuts. Or invest in a high-quality biotin cream.
The exact vitamin dose for each person will vary by sex, age, and overall health. What's important is that you choose a high-quality multivitamin from a source you trust. You can also purchase individual vitamin supplements, such as magnesium, vitamin D, biotin, and vitamin B12, to focus on specific deficiencies. While relying on vitamins to stay in good health may not be wise, you can boost your immune system and fight off disease with supplementation.