Supplements You Must Include in Your Diet
When it comes to supplements, we often don’t know how to make a choice.
Unfortunately, the great importance and benefits of dietary supplements for our health are not usually unveiled as they should.
Why Should I Take Supplements?
Taking supplements is a must to human body due to its large need for vitamins and minerals.
Even if these minerals and vitamins are present in a variety of foods, chances are that it may still fall short of need for some nutrients.
Among the several benefits of dietary supplements, some of them are:
- Avoid several health difficulties
- Slow up aging
- Soil Depletion
- Replace nutrients that miss in diet
- Our body’s need for constant growth
- Give health and reduce aging effects on skin
- Boost the imune system
A research at Science Direct done in 2004, says that micronutrients and metabolites supplements play important roles in the optimal growth of our body.
Eventually, these micronutrient deficiencies lead to premature aging and neural decay.
Thus, you need to consume supplements as they are not only useful, but also because they fulfill your daily nutrient intake requirements as well.
Which Supplements Should I Take?
So many supplements available today that can be even hard for us to distinguish and choose the most suitable for our dietary needs.
The following list will help you as it contains some of the top supplements everyone should take for optimum health.
However, you should still see your doctor first before taking any supplement to be sure of the best choices and dosage for you.
1. Omega 3
Keep your heart healthy by taking Omega 3 supplements daily.
WebMD in an article explains that Omega 3 fatty acids play an important role in preventing and curing heart diseases.
Omega 3 may also help in preventing various mental diseases, including cognitive decline.
RDA (Recommended Dietary Allowances) of Omega 3:
A 19+ healthy adult man needs an RDA of 1.6 grams.
A 19+ healthy women needs 1.1 grams per day to stay in optimal health.
2. Vitamin C
Vitamin C has more benefits than we could mention in a single topic.
It’s well know for its effects on preventing cold and flu as it protects the immune system and reduces inflammation.
Vitamin C is also responsible for giving a glowing, radiant, and healthy skin.
Moreover, it maintains bones, blood vessels, and cartilage functioning healthily, reduces the risk for stroke, heart diseases and cancer.
Our body doesn’t produce vitamin C naturally, and still, some may find it difficult to consume the recommended amount of vitamin C through diet.
That is why it is crucial to complement it with supplements.
RDA of Vitamin C:
RDA of vitamin C for a healthy adult man is 90mg/day.
Whereas for a woman RDA is 75 mg/day.
About 80% of adults suffer from magnesium deficiency. After potassium, magnesium is the second most important mineral.
It plays a critical role in numerous biochemical reactions, muscle contractions, nerve transmission, energy formation, and cell production.
Magnesium is responsible for the functioning of multiple processes in your body, including balancing blood pressure and sugar levels, protein synthesis, regulating muscle and nerve function, etc.
Its deficiency can cause muscle cramping, personality changes, numbness, psychological changes, migraines, and even seizures.
RDA of magnesium:
The daily requirement of magnesium is around 420 mg in adult man and 320 in adult women.
Our body requires zinc as our body is unable to make it daily, so taking supplements is a necessity as well.
It helps fasten the healing of wounds, digestion, metabolism, DNA synthesis and stimulates your sense of taste and smell.
According to research, multiple organs are affected clinically by zinc deficiency, including epidermal, gastrointestinal, central nervous, immune, skeletal, and reproductive systems.
Therefore, taking zinc as a supplement is beneficial for your overall optimal health.
Keep in mind that you must pair your zinc supplements with copper. These two compounds fight for absorption in your stomach.
Eventually zinc, because of being stronger, causes copper deficiency in your body.
RDA of zinc and copper:
Research suggests RDA of 11 mg of zinc for a healthy adult man and 8 mg for an adult woman.
As for copper, adult men and women are suggested to intake about 900 mcg/day.
Turmeric is a beneficial supplement specially for those individuals that have arthritis.
It helps by fighting inflammation as it contains phytochemicals, plant chemicals that reduces the risk of various diseases linked with oxidative damage.
It also helps in preventing chronic fatigue, headaches, diabetes, stroke, and cancer.
RDA of Turmeric:
There is no specific RDA for Turmeric, but multiple studies suggest an intake of around 500-1000 mg/day.
5. Vitamin K2
Because of its antioxidant properties, vitamin K2 protects cellular membranes from free radicals.
Moreover, it participates in blood clotting, blood thinning, bone metabolism, and chronic health.
Since our body produces vitamin K2 naturally but in a very low quantity, dietary supplements become necessary in order to properly obtain its benefits.
The amazing effects of vitamin K2 have also shown to be effective on preventing and even reversing atherosclerosis.
Check here our article on Vitamin K2 and Cardiovascular Health.
RDA of Vitamin K2:
There is no specific RDA for vitamin k2 suggested.
Nevertheless, ODS recommends 120 mcg/day for an adult man and 90 mcg/day for an adult woman.
6. Vitamin D3
The primary source of vitamin D3 is sunlight.
If you are not exposed to enough sunlight like in winters, you need to fulfill this requirement by taking a supplement.
Vitamin D3 works best with vitamin K2 as it absorbs calcium from your small intestine and coronaries 20 times faster, depositing it on teeth, joints and bones.
Vitamin D3 strengthens your immune system, helps maintain muscle strength, and aids in absorbing calcium and phosphorus in your body.
RDA of Vitamin D3:
RDA of vitamin D3 for an adult body is 15 mcg/day (600 IUs).
Supplements and Safety
Experts agree that taking supplements daily within recommended doses, cause no harm.
They, however, can include ingredients in them, depending on manufacturing, that can cause adverse effects on your body.
Therefore, you must be alert to the possibility of having a bad reaction to a product you are trying out for the first time.
These side effects can range from slightly nausea to more serious ones.
Moreover, you have to be cautious about consuming supplements, especially if you are pregnant.
Make sure to double-check with a physician before giving them to children as well.
Always certify if the supplements have gone through testing for safety in children and pregnant women before taking them, if that’s your case.
Things to Consider
Here is a list of things to consider before choosing your supplements:
- If you are using supplements to treat a condition, consult your doctor first.
- If you have any surgical procedure scheduled, avoid taking supplements or seek advice.
- Even if they claim to be “natural”, it doesn’t necessarily means it is safe, so stay aware. Safety only depends on factors such as how these supplements have undergone production, their chemical makeup, and the amount you consume.
- Using supplements along with medications can be risky for your health, alerts The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Consult your doctor/physician before starting any.
- Before taking any variety of supplements, know its benefits, risks, dosage, and how long should the dosage be taken. If possible, make a list.
So, in conclusion, be wise in the choices you make and purchase supplements from well-known brands with seals and avoid any third-party sellers.
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- Todd, N. (2019) Omega-3 Fish Oil Supplements for Heart Disease. https://www.webmd.com/hypertension-high-blood-pressure/guide/omega-3-fish-oil-supplements-for-high-blood-pressure
- Derbyshire, E. (2018) Brain health across the lifespan: A systematic review on the role of omega-3 fatty acid supplements. Nutrients, vol.10(8) Article 1094.
- National Institutes of Health (2020b) Vitamin C. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminC-HealthProfessional/
- Joseph, G. B., McCulloch, C. E., Nevitt, M. C., Neumann, J., Lynch, J. A., Lane, N. E. and Link, T. M. (2020) Associations between vitamins C and D intake and cartilage composition and knee joint morphology over 4 years: Data from the osteoarthritis initiative. Arthritis Care Research (Hoboken), vol.72(9) pp. 1239–1247.
- National Institutes of Health (2020a) Magnesium. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Magnesium-Consumer/
- National Institutes of Health (2020) Magnesium. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Magnesium-HealthProfessional/
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- National Institutes of Health (2020c) Zinc. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Zinc-HealthProfessional/
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- National Institutes of Health (2020d) What You Need to Know. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/WYNTK-Consumer
- U.S. Food and Drug Administration (2021) What You Need to Know about Dietary Supplements. https://www.fda.gov/food/buy-store-serve-safe-food/what-you-need-know-about-dietary-supplements