Supplements Vitamin Value

Vitamins and dietary supplements provide people with an easy, fast way of getting the proper nutrients they need. Because many of us rarely get the optimum nutrition from the foods we eat, taking multivitamins is a good way to ensure that our bodies can maintain proper function so that we can remain healthy.

However, when it comes to choosing a multivitamin and other supplements, an individual need to take a number of factors into consideration, including his or her:

  • age
  • family medical history (i.e., history of chronic diseases and conditions in his family)
  • general health status (i.e., whether or not (s)he currently suffers from any health problems)
  • intake of prescription medication (Some medication can react adversely with particular dietary supplements.)
  • race.

Each of these factors plays a role in determining the types of vitamins and minerals the body needs and doesn’t need. For example, while an adolescent girl should make sure she gets enough iron due to the start of menstruation, a woman going through menopause will need to increase her intake of vitamin D and calcium to prevent her bones from becoming brittle.

If you are unsure of the type of multivitamin and which supplements to take, consult your doctor. Inform him of whether or not you are currently taking any prescription medication and if you are currently suffering from any health condition. Your doctor can tell you which vitamins to take and avoid, helping you pick out the right dietary supplements for you.

In this section, we will discuss the role of vitamins. Our articles will describe the associated health complications that result from vitamin deficiencies, as well as the health problems that can arise if a person overdoses on vitamins. Understanding how to take vitamins and supplements properly is just as important as choosing the right supplement.

Prevention Nutrition

One of the main reasons to take multivitamins and other dietary supplements is to ensure that our bodies get the nutrition they need to function properly. Unfortunately, however, many people suffer from vitamin deficiencies, causing them to experience a number of mild to serious health problems, including:

  • abdominal pain
  • blindness
  • depression
  • insomnia
  • respiratory tract infections
  • skin rashes and lesions.

Keep in mind that the above list is abbreviated, reflecting only some of the symptoms associated with vitamin deficiencies. A lack of other essential nutrients, such as calcium, can cause other health problems, such as brittle bones and osteoporosis.

The health problems you experience will not only depend on which vitamin you lack, but they will also be determined by your current state of health. For example, those with vitamin deficiencies who already suffer from chronic health conditions, such as high blood pressure, are far more likely to experience more severe health complications than those who are in generally good health but aren’t getting enough vitamins.

The key to staying healthy and preventing the health complications associated with vitamin deficiencies lies in understanding prevention nutrition.

The Role of Vitamins

While taking vitamins is essential to staying health, at times we can get too many vitamins, putting our health at risk if vitamin overdoses persist for extended periods of time. In fact, with all of the vitamins, dietary supplements and fortified foods on the market, it’s easy for many of us to ingest too many vitamins.

Although the occasional vitamin overdose is harmless, regularly taking excessive amounts of vitamins and minerals seriously strains the body, causing health problems that include:

  • blood clots
  • diarrhea
  • nausea
  • reproductive problems.

If you fear that you are taking too many vitamins, talk to your doctor or dietician. These experts can map out which vitamins you are getting too much and too little of, helping you understand the role of vitamins.

Resource

NutraSanus (2007). Value of Vitamins and Multivitamins. Retrieved October 29, 2007, from the NutraSanus Web site: http://www.nutrasanus.com/vitamins-article.html.