A Guide to Daily Supplements

By on August 2, 2014

By Alicia Kwan−

Nutritionally speaking, there are over 40 different vitamins, minerals, and micronutrients the human body needs on a daily basis to remain healthy and properly nourished. Yes, 40. Which is a difficult requirement even for the most conscientious eater to meet through diet alone. And that’s before we’ve added in the pressures of a hectic schedule and eating on the go, which, let’s face it, is a reality for us all. This is exactly why vitamin supplements are an important part of any healthy nutrition plan.

But, where to start? Actually choosing the right vitamin supplement for you based on your unique set of needs is another challenge altogether. Let’s take a closer look at how you can make the smartest possible choice.

Understand Which Deficiencies Are the Most Common

There are certain essential nutrients that almost everyone has trouble getting enough of, so a great way to start your search for the right supplements is to learn which ones you’re likely to need by default.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Omega-3 fatty acids are associated with numerous health benefits including improved brain function and lowered risks of certain cancers. However, it can be difficult to get the doctor-recommended 1000 mgs a day.

Vitamin D: Not only do most people fail to get enough Vitamin D organically, but your average multivitamin doesn’t contain your entire daily recommended intake either. Vitamin D helps lower your risks of developing cancer, heart disease, and depression.

Calcium: Calcium is essential for strong bones and the prevention of osteoporosis, especially for women. However, even dairy lovers tend to have trouble consuming 1000 mgs a day, as your average glass of milk only contains about 300 mgs.

osteoporosis

Image Source: mdguidelines.com

Consider Your Unique Needs

Everyone is going to have a unique set of biological and lifestyle factors to consider when choosing the right supplements. The following are just a few common examples of people who may need to consider certain specific supplements.

Vegetarians: Many vegetarians and vegans tend to be low on nutrients commonly found in meat such as Vitamin B12 and iron. Consider having your doctor check your levels to see where you stand.

head full of vegetables

Image Source: www.oracle.com/splash/thinkquest

Future Parents: If you’re planning on adding to your family in the near future, you might want to consider prepping your body for the experience with options like folic acid and Vitamin C.

Stomach Issues: If you’re plagued by stomach or digestive issues, you may stand to benefit from the addition of a probiotic or fiber supplement to your diet. Ask your doctor for some recommendations.

Low Energy: If you suffer from a lack of energy and or focus, you could be deficient in B vitamins (especially B12). These vitamins also play a role in the maintenance of a healthy immune system.

Gender and Age: Women tend to need a different set of supplements to men. Your nutritional needs also change as you age. For instance, women tend to need more calcium and iron than the average man does. Seniors tend to be deficient in vitamins like B and D.

Before starting any supplement regime, be sure to check with your doctor as far as what your personal needs are. He or she will be able to help you choose a supplement regimen that will yield the best results.

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A Guide to Daily Supplements