There are so many nutrients essential for great health. While we can get all the nutrients we need from a balanced diet, the average American diet is low in numerous crucial nutrients. Fortunately, people can get their necessary nutrients from supplements from stores like supplementfirst.com, but even then, it may not be enough, especially without a proper diet.
Let’s take a look at the most common vitamin deficiencies.
Iron is an essential mineral that transports oxygen to our cells. Unfortunately, it is one of the most common deficiencies worldwide, affecting over 25% of people. The number increases in preschool children, along with menstruating or young pregnant women. Vegetarians and vegans have an increased risk of iron deficiency as well because they are unable to get as many protein sources.
The symptoms of an iron deficiency include weakness, tiredness, a weakened immune system, along with impaired brain function. You can get iron from red meat, organ meat, canned sardines, shellfish, beans, seeds, and dark leafy greens. You may choose to supplement from brands like Pure Encapsulations in Supplement First, but avoid overdoing it, as too much iron can also be harmful.
Iodine is another essential mineral, this time for normal thyroid function and hormonal production. It is also one of the more common nutrient deficiencies, affecting almost 1/3 of the world’s population. The most common symptom is an enlarged thyroid gland, along with weight gain, shortness of breath, and an increase in heart rate.
Severe iodine deficiency is very harmful, especially in children, as it may cause developmental abnormalities and mental retardation.
One can get iodine from the following dietary sources: Fish, dairy, eggs, and seaweed.
- Vitamin D
Vitamin D is also called the sunshine vitamin, a fat-soluble vitamin functioning as a steroid hormone in the body. It will travel through the bloodstream and cells, signaling to switch genes on or off. This vitamin is produced from cholesterol in the skin when exposed to sunlight. As such, those who live far from the equator are more at risk of a vitamin D deficiency and require to take supplements.
A vitamin D deficiency isn’t obvious because it has subtle symptoms that would develop over the years or decades. Those who are deficient might experience bone loss, muscle weakness, and an increased risk of fractures. In children, it can cause soft bones and growth delays.
While adequate sunlight exposure is key to getting proper vitamin D, one can also get it from cod liver oil, egg yolks, and fatty fish.
- Vitamin B12
Also called cobalamin, vitamin B12 is a water-soluble vitamin essential for blood formation, along with nerve and brain function. All cells in our bodies require vitamin B12 to function properly, but they can’t produce the vitamin, so it’s important to get it from food and supplements.
Dietary sources of vitamin B12 are meat, shellfish, eggs, and milk products.
Wrapping It Up
Make sure you speak with your doctor about any vitamin deficiencies you may have before taking supplements.