No argument about it – Americans are not getting enough vitamins and minerals from the foods they eat. As many as 90% of them fall under this category. So yea, the problem is that serious.
The good news is that many of them already know about this; and they have done the only reasonable thing under the circumstances – they have turned to nutritional supplements. But it turns out the effectiveness of these supplements is worth looking into.
There is a number of concerns pertaining to their use. For instance, are they even any good? Can they bridge the vitamin and deficiency gap left by the foods we consume? And also, how frequently should supplements be consumed to offer their intended benefits?
A study was recently done to put these questions to rest. The study involved over 10,000 adults aged 19 and over. The good news, according to the study, is that supplements actually help; and quite substantially actually.
The bad news is that not everybody gets to enjoy these nutritional benefits, despite using these supplements. And that is obviously where people need to make changes. In particular, it was discovered that the frequency with which you use supplements is very important.
So much so that in some cases, using the supplement and going without it does not make much of an impact on your risk of vitamin or mineral deficiency. For instance, without supplements, only 4% of Americans receive adequate amounts of Vitamin D.
Clearly, that is a shocking statistic. Furthermore, when the supplement is used for up 12 days a month, only 34% of people managed to be on the right side of Vitamin D adequacy. That is quite an impressive improvement, until you consider the impact of using this supplement for more than 25 days a month.
By taking Vitamin D almost every day of the month, 98% of people manage to get adequate amounts of this important vitamin. And this pattern is evident with practically every other mineral and vitamin investigated during the study.
In fact, with vitamins A and E, a 100% of the subjects were able to attain vitamin adequacy by taking the vitamin supplements for more than 25 days each month. So, this study clearly indicates that supplements do help.
But this is not a ringing endorsement for what supplement makers are offering. It is important to remember that the reason you need supplements in the first place is that you are not eating foods with the right nutritional balance.
Also, research has shown that if you are overweight or obese, chances are high you have low levels of vitamins D and E. “More than 70% of Americans fall in this category”, say the weight loss experts of Lodlois.com. “Vitamin D and E deficiency is consistently reported in overweight people, and there is a possibility that these two vitamins may help to lower the obesity rate”.
The above aforementioned study proves that the number of Americans having well balanced diets is dismally low. Diet should and will always remain to be the ideal source of vitamins and minerals. That means your goal should be the consumption of foods that provide you with all the minerals and vitamins you need so that you don’t have to turn to supplements.
But despite your best efforts, you might find that your diet falls short in some way or another when it comes to nourishing your body with the vitamins and minerals it requires. And that is where supplements should come in – as an alternative, not the first option in your efforts to eliminate nutritional deficiency.
But when you do turn to supplements, remember to use them regularly. You might not be doing yourself any favors otherwise.
Some good sources of supplements are Vitacost.com online store, and the Puridan’s Pride brand.