Do you need vitamin supplements? The answer is, most likely, yes. However, which vitamin supplements an individual needs depends upon diet, lifestyle, and geography. So while it is reasonable to assume that most people should be taking vitamin supplements of some sort, determining which supplements requires an analysis of the needs of each particular individual.
All of our bodies require B complex vitamins to function properly. In addition, we need vitamins A, C, E, K, and D. In addition to these basic vitamins, our bodies also need other essential elements like calcium, choline, iron, potassium, magnesium, and linoleic acid. Some people do not need to take a multivitamin if they get most of the vitamins and minerals that they need from their diet. However, they may need supplements for one particular vitamin or mineral that is not as prevalent in their diet. For example, vitamin B12 is found primarily in animal products. So, vegetarians and those who limit animal proteins may need to take B12 vitamin supplements.
Another vitamin that may be lacking in some diets is vitamin D. Although the body produces vitamin D on its own, it has to have sunlight in order to do so. Geography can play a role in the need for supplements in this case because about half of the states in America do not have enough UVB irradiation during the winter for residents to produce enough vitamin D.
Those who regularly engage in strenuous physical activity might also consider vitamin supplements in order to lessen tissue damage to muscles, enable the lungs to absorb oxygen more readily, and avoid cramps. Increasing one’s intake of vitamin K, vitamin E, and vitamin C are all options for those whose exercise regimen involves high-impact activities like running, boxing, or contact sports.
Because men and women differ in their nutritional needs and the ways their bodies absorb and utilize vitamins. Women considering children should make sure to get adequate levels of folic acid. Those going through menopause may need to increase vitamin D and calcium intake. Men should also take note of calcium intake, as some studies suggest that most men do not get the recommended number of units. In addition, men should get at least three milligrams per day of boron to decrease prostate cancer risks and to improve memory and concentration.
If you are concerned that you may be lacking in a vitamin or essential trace element, consider vitamin supplements as a way to ensure that you are getting all of the nutrients your body needs to stay fully healthy. When making a decision, take into consideration diet, geography, gender, and overall lifestyle to help determine which vitamin supplements would best benefit you.