Dietary supplements are man-made products that are designed to boost your nutrient intake to adequate levels. They are often recommended for people who have a vitamin deficiency or insufficiency. Vitamins and minerals are the most common form of dietary supplements, but they also come in the form of essential fatty acids, enzymes, oils, probiotics, and extracts from glands, plants, and animal organs.
Supplements are designed to fortify your diet, which means that you take them in addition to regular food. Some are sold as individual nutrients, which gives you a higher concentration of a certain kind, but you can also get them as multivitamins. Multivitamins contain smaller amounts of various nutrients.
There are many kinds of vitamins and minerals that you can take, but here are some of the most common kinds of nutritional supplements and their health benefits.
You might be aware that vitamin C is helpful for fighting the common cold, but it has many other health benefits, too. Vitamin C can also protect against cardiovascular issues, improve your vision, boost your immune system, and shield you from certain types of cancer. According to WebMD, vitamin C is one of the most versatile and effective of all the supplements available. Furthermore, its list of health benefits is growing as researchers continue to study its far-reaching effects.
There are several natural sources of vitamin C, including citrus fruits like grapefruit and oranges. Some vegetables contain higher amounts of vitamin C, too. The vegetables with higher levels of vitamin C are broccoli, tomatoes, peppers, and leafy green vegetables. Like many other vitamins, vitamin C is sometimes added to fruit juices and milk, including dairy milk and dairy-free milk.
To get adequate amounts of vitamin C, experts recommend eating at least five servings of fruit and vegetables each day. If you can’t eat enough fruits and vegetables to meet your daily vitamin C requirements, then you might want to consider taking a supplement.
Vitamin D is another beneficial supplement. Its primary role is to help the body absorb calcium, which promotes bone health and supports a variety of bodily functions. Along with protecting against broken and frail bones, vitamin D may ward off autism, chronic pain, depression, heart disease, high blood pressure, and some kinds of cancer—including prostate cancer, colon cancer, and breast cancer.
Unlike many vitamins and minerals, which are consumed primarily through food, vitamin D can be absorbed through sunlight. If you live someplace with year-round sunshine, like Florida, then you may have no trouble getting the daily recommended amount of vitamin D. Vitamin D is also present in dairy products, and it’s sometimes added to fortified non-dairy milk products and cereals, too.
But if your diet or climate aren’t adequate for providing your daily Vitamin D levels, a supplement might provide the vitamin boost that you need.
Iron is essential for optimal blood health. It’s used by red blood cells to make hemoglobin, which is a molecule that delivers oxygen throughout the body. Having low levels of iron in your system can make you feel weary and lethargic. Unusually low levels of iron produce anemia, which is present in about 1-2 percent of Americans.
Anemia can be diagnosed through a blood test at your doctor’s office. Your doctor can also test the level of a blood protein called ferritin, which indicates how much iron your body has in its reserve supplies. When the body is forced to tap into its iron supplies, ferritin levels drop.
Like most vitamins, iron occurs naturally in some foods. Foods that are rich in iron include leafy green vegetables like spinach and kale. It’s also found in lentils, beans, tofu, and meat. Nuts and whole-grain breads are also foods that contain iron.
If you have an iron deficiency or if you don’t eat foods that are good sources of iron, then you can replenish your iron reserves by taking iron supplements. Ideally, you will be able to combat anemia and other problems related to low iron levels by taking iron supplements as well.
Mimosa pudica is an annual flowering plant that belongs to the legume family. The plant is noted for its unusual defense mechanism, which is its compound leaves that fold in when the plant is disturbed. Mimosa pudica is commercially grown and harvested. Although various parts of the plant are used for different purposes, the seeds are used to make supplements—which are usually turned into capsule form.
When used as a supplement, the plant supports proper digestive system function. It is primarily a fat-soluble material, which makes it ideal for proper digestion by sticking to substances that enter the digestive tract. Because the plant tends to stick to whatever it comes into contact with, it is also helpful in getting rid of parasites.
When used as a supplement, it can be combined with other supplements and herbs for optimal health, including multivitamins. When you start taking the supplement, it’s best to do so on an empty stomach, which means avoiding eating food for about 20 minutes after you take the supplement or waiting at least two hours after having a meal to take it.
There are many types of supplements available, and they have different but equally valuable benefits. Since vitamins and supplements are an increasingly popular choice for many people, they are becoming more readily available in a variety of forms. You might find them in the form of capsules, tablets, and chewable supplements.
Before starting to use supplements, you should always consult with your doctor to determine which ones are right for you. If you have allergies, a doctor can help you figure out if the supplement you’re planning to take poses any risk.
Some supplement combinations, such as mimosa pudica with other herbs and supplements, are okay. But there are other supplement combinations that you should avoid, and your physician can help you make a safe choice. Additionally, your doctor will advise you if there are any supplements you should avoid because of existing medical conditions, your medical history, and any medications you’re taking.
Whether you need one or a half dozen, taking a supplement is a great way to boost your health to optimal levels!
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