Why Should You Take Supplemental Vitamins and Minerals

Why Should You Take Supplemental Vitamins and Minerals

Less time is available for meal planning and preparation when one leads a busy lifestyle. It is much too easy to load up on calories that don't provide any nutritional value by eating fast food and other convenience foods. The convenience of pre-packaged foods and mixes makes life easier, but they rarely supply all of the nutrients that your body requires to remain healthy. When you are too busy to consume meals that are balanced, taking a high-quality multinutrient supplement can help fill in the nutritional gaps in your diet.

But what if you follow a nutritious eating plan? Do you still require vitamin and nutritional supplements in your daily routine? The majority of professionals who study nutrition and the typical diet of Americans agree that the answer is, candidly speaking, yes.

In the past ten years, medical researchers who study disorders such as diabetes and heart disease have all seen frightening rises in the prevalence of those ailments. This trend has been observed across the board. It's not simply that more people are being told they have diabetes or heart disease these days. There has been a significant shift in the demographics of people who are being diagnosed. Diabetes mellitus and other diseases that were long assumed to start only in middle life are now being diagnosed in considerable numbers of children for the first time ever, and medical professionals are reporting this finding for the very first time. 

Diet and nutritional deficits have been linked to nearly every one of these illnesses. Why is anything like this occurring in a civilization that is as prosperous and well-fed as ours? Some nutritionists believe that the reasons are all intertwined with our way of life as well as the changes that have occurred in society and the environment over the course of the previous century.

A century ago, small farms were responsible for the production of the vast majority of food. Farmers realized that the soil needed to be replenished in order for food to grow in a healthy and robust manner, so they rotated their crops on a regular basis to ensure that they had the best harvests possible. Because the animals were given the freedom to roam and graze wherever they pleased, the diet of their cattle was quite diversified. This indicated that the meat obtained from those animals did, in fact, contain the nutrients that were present in the food that those animals consumed. The fruits and vegetables that were served for dinner had not been preserved by canning for several months or even years in advance; rather, they had been cut up and prepared in the kitchen. Because the meals had not been subjected to any processing, there was less of a requirement to supplement them with the vitamins that are lost during preparation.

Since then, there have been several significant shifts in agricultural practices. Crops are produced in soil that has been sterile and stripped of its natural nutrients as a result of overuse, the use of insecticides, pesticides, and other chemicals that are intended to stimulate the growth of large, visually appealing fruits and vegetables at the expense of the soil's vitamin and mineral content. Natural fertilizers, which were responsible for maintaining healthy soil, have been largely superseded by synthetic fertilizers, which contain only a small fraction of the required chemicals and none of the enzymes that are necessary for the body to break down and absorb the vitamins and minerals that are found in food. 

The production and processing of foods on a mass scale removes even more of their natural nutrients. It is possible to remove or destroy up to ninety percent of the vitamins that are found in a fresh peach or carrot through the processes of cooking, canning, and sterilization. Even many items that appear to be fresh have likely been sprayed with gases meant to retain their color and crispness while they travel across the country. This is done in order to prevent the food from becoming stale. The ultimate effect is that vegetables and fruits contain only a fraction of the vitamins and minerals that the same foods contained one hundred years ago, with a large portion of the vitamin and mineral content already inaccessible to the body.

When this is considered in conjunction with the reality that the majority of Americans consume meals that are high in convenience but low in nutrition, it becomes abundantly evident that they require the addition of vitamins and other nutritional supplements.

It is essential to keep in mind that taking nutritional supplements is not a suitable replacement for eating a well-balanced diet. They are intended to be exactly that supplements to fill in the gaps that our lifestyles leave in our diets, and they are designed to do just that. The vast majority of medical professionals advocate taking a high-quality multivitamin supplement on a daily basis as a bare minimum, but in today's world, sophisticated nutraceutical companies are manufacturing solutions that are much more comprehensive than simple vitamins and minerals. These goods may contain specialty antioxidants that are significantly more potent than vitamins, as well as other compounds that are useful to health but won't be found in any normal multivitamin supplement, such as enzymes for digestive health, herbal extracts, or other natural supplements. Additionally, these products may contain other natural supplements.

No matter what kind of dietary supplement you end up taking, it is imperative that you discuss your decision with your primary care physician so that he is aware of your intentions.

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