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Should You Be Taking Nutritional Supplements?

By July 25, 2014 No Comments

It sounds easy – ‘meet your needs with a tablet.’ But you should always start with healthy foods, our Perth fitness trainer suggests.

A balanced, healthy diet is a wonderful thing. When you engage in a regime of healthful eating, you’re giving your body the nutrients it needs. But there are some cases where nutritional or vitamin supplements can be helpful.

Should You Be Taking Nutritional Supplements

Vegans and vegetarians

A vegan diet lacks B12 which is found in red meat and eggs. B12 is crucial to a healthy nervous system, so it’s critical that vegans supplement their diet with this vitamin. Vegetarians who eat eggs fare a little better than vegans, but it’s still a good idea to take B12.

The lactose intolerant

As calcium is important to bone structure, those who cannot digest the proteins in dairy should consider taking calcium tablets. Women in their 40s-60s can be prone to osteoporosis, so a diet rich in calcium (check with your GP, as too much calcium can actually be bad) will keep bone structure in check.

Pregnant and nursing women

During pregnancy, iron is a mineral important to both mother and the baby. A daily dose of folic acid is beneficial to both pregnant and breastfeeding women and vitamin D keeps breastfed infants healthy and strong.

The ageing

As we get older, our bones and joints begin to break down slowly – especially if they aren’t exercised with frequency. Potassium is shown to assist with keeping bones strong, especially later in life. Magnesium is another mineral that helps with bone strength. Many older people take medications that reduce the absorption of magnesium, so a supplement can be a good idea.

Rule of thumb

Keep in mind, supplements should do just that – supplement your diet, not become substitutes for eating well. It’s always a good idea to talk with your GP first before taking supplements. Some can interact with medication and your GP or pharmacist will be able to give you advice on what to avoid.

And to complete your health regimen, you should also exercise regularly. Join our fitness community in Perth. Call (08) 9342 9028.