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Sensible Supplements: Multivitamins Do You Actually Need

- 15 min read
written by Shield Connect

The importance of a healthy diet cannot be overemphasized. It helps increase our overall wellness and support our very busy lives. But sometimes, a diet is just not enough to keep us going. Factors such as stress or sleep disorders like insomnia, or issues with our digestive system , may affect our digestive health and … Continue reading “Sensible Supplements: Multivitamins Do You Actually Need”

The importance of a healthy diet cannot be overemphasized. It helps increase our overall wellness and support our very busy lives. But sometimes, a diet is just not enough to keep us going. Factors such as stress or sleep disorders like insomnia, or issues with our digestive system , may affect our digestive health and also make it difficult for our bodies to absorb all the nutrients that we need from our food.

One of the best ways to manage this and get the energy boost that we so desperately need is to turn to multivitamins. Multivitamins are dietary supplements that contain different types of essential vitamins and minerals as well as other nutrient-rich ingredients such as amino acids and herbs like ginseng. Taking them allows your body to gain all the necessary vitamins that it was unable to take from your diet.

Essential Vitamins and Minerals That Your Multivitamins Should Contain

  1. Vitamin A: Vitamin A is known for preserving and improving eyesight. It is the major component of Rhodopsin, a visual pigment and light receptor found in the retina, which helps us see better at night or in dim light. Vitamin A also boosts the immune system by facilitating the growth of T-cells, one of the white blood cells that are responsible for fighting off infection. Another benefit of this vitamin is that it helps maintain healthy skin. A deficiency of Vitamin A could lead to night blindness and hyperkeratosis, a condition characterized by the hardening or thickening of the skin.
  2. Vitamin B Complex:  There are 8 main B-Vitamins that help with metabolism and increasing energy levels. These are:
    • Vitamin B1/Thiamine: Vitamin B1 is an important vitamin that helps support the functioning of the nervous system, circulatory system, and digestive system. It also helps the body to produce Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP), a molecule that provides the energy required for cellular activities such as the transport of proteins from one cell to another. A deficiency of thiamine could lead to Beriberi, a condition that involves nerve damage, heart complications, and even muscle paralysis.
    • Vitamin B2/Riboflavin: This improves brain function and digestive health. It also helps the body break down carbohydrates and convert it into ATP which produces energy.
    • Vitamin B3/Niacin: Vitamin B3 is needed for good blood circulation and brain function. It helps prevent a condition known as Pellagra which is characterized by memory loss, diarrhea, and skin inflammation. Niacin is known to reduce the levels of Low-Density Lipoprotein (LDL) Cholesterol in the body which could block and damage the arteries and lead to a stroke.
    • Vitamin B5/Pantothenic Acid: This B Vitamin lowers cholesterol and helps us maintain a healthy digestive tract. It also promotes healthy hair and skin and keeps the nervous system functioning properly.
    • Vitamin B6/Pyridoxine: It is recommended that older people get enough of this vitamin as it aids the creation of neurotransmitters and could lower the risk of dementia. Pyridoxine can also be used to treat Hyperemesis Gravidarum, also known as morning sickness, during pregnancy.
    • Vitamin B7/Biotin: Apart from the metabolization of carbohydrates and protein, Biotin helps maintain the mucous membranes, skin, and hair as well. Vitamin B7 deficiency could lead to hair loss.
    • Vitamin B9/Folate: This is also known as Folic Acid and it is especially important for pregnant women or women who want to get pregnant.  It is needed for the production of cells and good cognitive function. It also prevents birth defects and aids fetus development. Folic acid deficiency could lead to Megaloblastic Anemia, a condition that involves the enlargement of red blood cells and also a decrease in the number of those cells.
    • Vitamin B12/Cobalamin: If you’ve never heard of the other B-Vitamins, I’m sure you must have heard of this one. Vitamin B12 is crucial for red blood cell development. It helps the cells develop properly so as to prevent anemia. It also helps regulate DNA, provide energy, and improve neurological function.
  3. Vitamin C: This well-known vitamin does more than just boost the immune system and fight off the common cold. It is an antioxidant that helps improve and maintain skin health and delays the aging of cells. It also strengthens our connective tissues, reduces the risk of heart disease, allows for better absorption of iron, and may reduce blood pressure levels
  4. Vitamin D: Vitamin D is essential for Calcium absorption which helps us develop strong and healthy bones. It improves colon health, lowers the chances of getting back pain, and prevents hair loss. It may help prevent or treat Gestational Diabetes, a condition that causes high blood sugar levels and develops only during pregnancy. Severe Vitamin D deficiency may also lead to Osteomalacia which causes the softening of bones and, as a result, makes them fracture easily.
  5. Vitamin E: This is another vitamin that helps maintain healthy vision and boosts immune function. It acts as an antioxidant and fights off the free radicals that damage our cells and cause aging. By preventing oxidative damage, it could help lower the risks of certain cancers.  Vitamin E also plays a vital role in strengthening cell membranes.
  6. Vitamin K: Vitamin K is essential for wound healing. It produces the proteins that are required for blood clotting. This is why newborns are given a dose of Vitamin K to prevent hemorrhagic disease. The Vitamin is used to treat Hypoprothrombinemia, a condition that is associated with uncontrolled or prolonged bleeding. Infants are more at risk of Vitamin K deficiencies so it is advised that they get the prescribed dosage and never miss a dose.
  7. Calcium: Calcium is needed not only for the development of strong bones but also for the regulation of blood pressure in young people and pregnant women. Like Vitamin K, it also plays a vital role in blood clotting and it helps control muscle contraction. It especially relaxes the heart muscles, thereby improving heart health.
  8. Chromium: This helps control blood glucose levels, so it is very beneficial for people living with type 2 diabetes. It helps improve insulin sensitivity and may also help manage Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) which has been associated with insulin resistance. Some studies have shown that Chromium supplements help trigger weight loss.
  9. Iron: The benefits of iron are numerous. It helps with hemoglobin and DNA production, increases energy levels, protects the body from free radicals, and even helps the body get rid of toxins. It is important for pregnant women as it reduces the risk of premature birth. Iron reduces fatigue, improves cognitive function, and increases stamina. A low intake of iron could cause anemia.
  10. Magnesium: If you’re dealing with depression and anxiety, magnesium may help relieve these symptoms and boost your mood. This mineral improves the health of muscles, maintains good bone density, regulates neurotransmitters, and controls blood sugar levels. It plays a role in the repair and creation of DNA as well. Because it is a muscle relaxant, it may help improve your sleep cycle.
  11. Potassium: One of the main benefits of potassium is that it helps reduce blood pressure. It is usually recommended by doctors to improve heart health and also treat digestive disorders. Potassium can prevent Osteoporosis, a chronic bone disease that causes extremely low bone density. It also prevents muscle wasting in older people.
  12. Zinc: Zinc is a powerhouse mineral that is involved in several cellular activities like DNA synthesis and the stimulation of immune cells. It is vital for metabolism, wound healing, and blood sugar control. Zinc may improve heart health and reduce the risk of some age-related diseases. It also appears to be effective against viruses like the rhinovirus which causes the common cold. Other benefits of Zinc include improving vision and treating acne.

When you can’t eat well, you can take some multivitamins to get the necessary nutrients. However, these energy boosters must never replace your actual meals. Multivitamins provide amazing benefits such as reduced stress and anxiety levels, better memory, collagen production for healthy skin, good heart health, improved eyesight, a stronger immune system, and reduced risk of cancer. They also have a positive effect on your mood.

As important as they are, you should remember that too much of a good thing might make you sick. Therefore, it is imperative that you use it as prescribed or as directed on the medication guide.

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