"I don't need vitamins, I have a very healthy diet." Is this really the case? Many people believe they are getting enough vitamins and minerals through their diet, however we still see a large percentage of individuals with deficiencies... Read Stacie Ellis' outlook on vitamin supplements!
“I don’t need vitamins, I have a very healthy diet.” Is this really the case? Many people believe they are getting enough vitamins and minerals through their diet, however we still see a large percentage of individuals with deficiencies. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture 50% of Americans are deficient in vitamin A, vitamin C and magnesium. 70% of the population is deficient in calcium, 80% in vitamin E, and 90% in potassium. According to the Center of Disease Control and Prevention over 50% of the population is deficient in vitamin D. With such alarming statistics adding a vitamin supplements is a key strategy to help many individuals prevent deficiencies and conditions associates with them. Below are some reasons why you may want to add vitamins to your day.
1. Not eating a balance diet
Americans busy lifestyle affects is taking a toll on their eating habits. Cooking is the last thing on many people’s mind. We want easy meals that taste good and doesn’t take much time to prepare. This means cooking normally involves only a few ingredients or prepared from ready to serve meals. It is very common for meals have only 2 or 3 of the 5 food groups, which in turn causes nutritional imbalances and vitamin and mineral deficiencies.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture MyPlate model, half of our plate should include fruits and vegetables, less than a quarter protein, the other quarter grains, and a side of dairy. By following this plan individuals should get a balanced meal with macronutrients, vitamins, and minerals. The reason for this is because specific vitamins and minerals are found in each of the food groups. The only issue with this method is the fact that individuals still may be deficient in certain nutrients. All food items have a different amount of vitamins and minerals, and it is possible to follow this plan and still not get adequate amounts of certain vitamins and minerals for the day. Because of this a multivitamin would be beneficial to help meet those areas in which individuals may be lacking.
2. We don’t eat enough fruits and veggies?
Vegetables are loaded with nutrients. The USDA recommends a minimum of 3 servings of vegetables a day and 2 servings of fruit. We sometimes forget that this is the “minimum” recommended amount. The recommended amount is actually 7-13 servings a day! Most Americans barely get 1 serving in a day, and getting 13 servings a day is nearly non-existent. According to the Center of Disease Control the average American consumes fruit only 1.1 times a day and vegetables 1.6 times. In the past 5 years there was a 7% decrease in the consumption in vegetables and 2% decrease in fruit (2). With such a low fruit and vegetable consumption, we are not nearly getting as many vitamins and minerals in our body as we would if we ate the recommended amounts.
3. We eat fast food
The restaurant industry has been growing in sales year after year. If people are not cooking a quick meal at home then it is likely they are getting their meal from restaurants. The average American buys a meal or snack from a restaurant 5.8 times a week (3). The top chain restaurants in the country are all fast food restaurants with McDonalds in the lead (4). Restaurants are doing better at providing healthier alternatives, however, we cannot deny that the best sellers are the food items that are full of calories, sugar, and fat, and has little to no nutrient value. When most people go out to eat, they are not thinking about getting a nutritious meal with fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein.
4. Athletes need more
With so much wear and tear on our body when we exercise, we must have adequate nutrients to help build it back up. Vitamins and minerals are used in the metabolism of energy and the development of muscle strength. With increase in energy usage, there is an increase in usage in our vitamins and minerals. It is essential that athletes have adequate amounts of all the vitamins and minerals so they do not become risk of injury, fatigue, deficiencies, and depressed immune system.
5. We don’t like getting sick.
One of the major reasons why anyone would take a multivitamin is so they can live a healthy life without sickness. Many people take supplements during cold/flu season to help their immune system. Studies have shown that the use of vitamins have benefits in boosting the immune system and help prevent infection.
The usage of vitamins can help feel those nutritional gaps in your diet. Vitafive is a gummy vitamin pack that you can use to help you meet your daily vitamin and mineral requirements. Vitafive gummy vitamin packs can be customized based on your individual needs and are mailed monthly to your home. Use them to be your avenue of helping you reach your nutritional needs.
1. Environmental Working Group. How much is too much? Appendix B: vitamin and mineral deficiencies in the U.S. June 19, 2014. Retrieved from: http://www.ewg.org/research/how-much-is-too-much/appendix-b-vitamin-and-mineral-deficiencies-us.
2. National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity. State Indicator Report on Fruits and Vegetables 2013. Center of Disease control 2013.
3. United States Healthful Food Council. About the United states Healthful Food Council. 2016. Retrieved from: http://ushfc.org/about/#fancy-form-delay
4. Nations Restraint’s News. Top 100 Chains: US Sales. 2012. Retrieved from: http://nrn.com/us-top-100/top-100-chains-us-sales
5. Yoshikawa TT, High KP. Nutritional Strategies to Boost Immunity and prevention in Elderly Individuals. Clin Infect Dis. (2001) 33 (11):1892-1900.
6. Mullin GE. Vitamin A and Immunity. Nutr Clin Pract August 2011 vol. 26 no. 4 495-496
7. Haryanto B, Suksmasari T, Wintergerst E, Maggini S (2015) Multivitamin Supplementation Supports Immune Function and Ameliorates Conditions Triggered By Reduced Air Quality. Vitam Miner 3:128.