‘Nutritional Supplements’

The Case For Nutritional Supplements

Do you take nutritional supplements?  Are you on a diet?  Well, if you’re reading this post, you probably are at least thinking about a diet.  But are you getting enough nutrients to make your diet actually work?

When I talk about nutritional supplements, I’m talking about good old-fashioned vitamins and minerals.  And while there are additional supplements like CoQ10 and fish oils that can also help, I’m not going to talk about them here (I’ll save that for another post).  Nope, I’m talking about the vitamins and minerals that are necessary for good health; the kind you find on a bottle of multivitamins.  Let’s talk about it.

What Does RDI Mean?

RDI (Reference Daily Intake) is basically the same meaning as RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance) or MDA (Minimum Daily Allowance).  It’s the amount of a vitamin or mineral that is needed to prevent a deficiency in a normal, healthy individual.

OK, raise your hand if you are a normal, healthy individual.  If you always eat right, don’t take any medications, aren’t stressed and live in an area with little or no pollution.  Hmmm, no hands — didn’t think so.

OK, here’s a problem with the RDIs and dieting; to get the nutrition you need from food to meet the RDIs, you have to eat at least 2,000 calories a day.  That doesn’t bode well for a woman trying to lose weight, does it?

An RDI also doesn’t take into account the drugs we take (even if they are “just” over-the-counter), the air we breath, the foods we eat or our lifestyles, which include stresses of all kinds.

Vitamins, Minerals and Drug Interactions

Do you suffer from acid reflux, and so take a medication to reduce stomach acids?  If so, you are reducing the absorption of several vitamins, most notably vitamin B12.

Have aches and pains so you take an anti-inflammatory drug (ibuprofen, naproxen or the like)?  You’re interfering with your body’s ability to absorb folic acid and vitamin C.

Ulcer meds, like Pepcid or any one of the others?  They interfere with B12, folic acid, calcium, D, iron and zinc.

And that’s just everyday medications; I haven’t even touched on things like anti-depressants, anti-convulsants, cholesterol-lowering drugs or heart medications.

So you see where I am going with this; even if we did eat right all the time, the common medications we take lower our body’s ability to absorb various vitamins and minerals.

Which Nutritional Supplements?

First and foremost, at the very least take a muti-vitamin supplement.  One-a-Day Women’s or Centrum, if you can’t get to a health food store and get something better.  (The reason I say that is that these two brands use some synthetic vitamins, such as synthetic E, that are not as potent as natural E.)

There are plenty of online sites that also have more natural multi-vitamins, such as Puritan’s Pride
icon and Vitamin World (two who show the label details).

Oh, and once you buy them, take them!  They don’t do you any good sitting on the shelf.

Do You Need More?

Since this post is getting kind of long, I’ll cover this topic a little more in another post.  But if you’re taking drugs that interfere with vitamin uptake, are stressed, ill, have gastrointestinal problems or are living in a polluted environment, you’ll seriously want to consider taking some extra supplements.

Meanwhile, think about it.  Your health is obviously important to you, or you wouldn’t be reading this.  A simple multivitamin is an easy and inexpensive way to get more of what you need for better health.