How Can I Get The Vitamins And Minerals I Need
It is usually better to get the nutrients you need from food, rather than a pill. Thats because nutrient-dense foods contain other things that are good for you, like fiber.
Most older people can get all the nutrients they need from foods. But if you arent sure, talk with your doctor or a registered dietitian to find out if you are missing any important vitamins or minerals. He or she may recommend a vitamin or dietary supplement.
If you do need to supplement your diet, look for a supplement that contains the vitamin or mineral you need without a lot of other unnecessary ingredients. Read the label to make sure the dose is not too large. Avoid supplements with mega-doses. Too much of some vitamins and minerals can be harmful, and you might be paying for supplements you dont need. Your doctor or pharmacist can recommend brands that fit your needs.
Heart Disease And Cancer
Research suggests that vitamin C may help prevent heart disease and cancer.
Antioxidants like vitamin C do seem to reduce the oxidative stress associated with these diseases. This can happen when there are too many free radicals in your body.
A 2013 review found that vitamin C may help prevent stroke. This was mostly true for people who had low intake of vitamin C before treatment or were at high risk for stroke.
The review only found this benefit for vitamin C from food sources, not from supplements.
A 2013 review noted that high intake of vitamin C does seem to be associated with a lower risk of certain cancers. It also noted that intravenous vitamin C has been shown to improve outcomes for cancer patients.
Many experimental cancer therapies include using vitamin C along with other treatments, however. This makes it hard to know how much of an impact vitamin C has on its own.
What Micronutrients Are There And What Are Their Effects On Our Body
Micronutrients can in principle be divided into two types vitamins and minerals. Both types belong to the essential food components and must therefore be supplied to the body through food.
Although the human organism is able to produce some vitamins itself, they are not available in sufficient quantities to meet the bodys needs, so the majority must be provided through diet. However, not all vitamins are the same there is one more detail to consider: on the one hand there are vitamins that are water-soluble, and on the other hand there are also vitamins that are considered fat-soluble.
This is particularly important to know, because water-soluble vitamins, in contrast to fat-soluble vitamins, can hardly or not at all be stored in the body. Therefore, a regular supply is extremely important.
|Vitamin E, Vitamin K||Vitamin C|
Minerals, on the other hand, are exclusively absorbed through food. They can be further divided into quantity and trace elements.
The bulk elements include sodium, calcium and magnesium. While bulk elements occur in the body in increased concentrations, the body stores trace elements only in small amounts. Trace elements therefore include iron, copper and zinc.
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Best Food Sources Of Vitamin C
While high-quality supplements are an excellent way to optimize your vitamin C levels, you can set the foundation by also including vitamin-C-rich foods in your daily diet.*
And as Ferira expounds, “Nobody is suggesting vitamin C is only found in foods or supplementsyou can utilize both. There’s synergy there. And after all, those foods aren’t only vitamin C sources but a complex array of macro-, micro-, and phytonutrients, so eat up!”
The best food sources of vitamin C include:
How Much Vitamin C Is In An Orange
While you might typically turn to oranges as your go-to Vitamin C food source, you can get this immune-supporting nutrient in other fruits and vegetables, too. For example, take a look at these Vitamin C-rich food sources:3,
- Sweet Yellow Peppers : 137 mg
- Guava : 126 mg
- Kale : 80 mg
- Kiwi : 71 mg
- Broccoli : 51 mg
- Brussels Sprouts : 49 mg
- Lemons : 83 mg
- Papaya : 87 mg
- Strawberries : 89 mg
- Orange : 70 mg
Tip: Did you know that excessive heat can destroy Vitamin C in food? To get as much Vitamin C from these foods as possible, eat them raw or lightly cooked. Try cooking them for shorter periods of time, preferably through steaming or microwaving, which limits the loss of nutrients in the cooking process.4
Realistically, if you eat a healthy, balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables, you probably get enough Vitamin C in your daily diet. However, if you dont consume these types of foods every day, a Vitamin C supplement can be helpful.
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How Much Vitamin C Should I Be Taking
Recommended intakes of vitamin C have been developed by the Food and Nutrition Board. These are much higher than the amount required to prevent deficiency:
- Infants, 0-6 months: 40mg
- Pregnant women: 80mg , 85mg
- Breastfeeding women: 115mg , 120mg .
Whenever we have an infection or inflammation, our bodies require more vitamin C so your general intake should increase to cope with the extra demand.
Many factors can impair the absorption of vitamin C or increase a persons requirement for it. The following people should include an extra 50-100mg of vitamin C per day in their diet or in the form of supplements:
- People with cancer or who have a compromised immune system
- People who drink alcohol daily or excessively
- People with diabetes
- Pregnant or breastfeeding women
Rates of vitamin C deficiency vary around the world with rates as low as 7.1% in the United States to nearly 74% in India. Total vitamin C deficiency manifesting as scurvy is rare.
Whats The Recommended Intake
The Institute of Medicine has developed a set of reference values for specific nutrient intake levels, including for vitamin C.
One set of guidelines is known as the Recommended Dietary Allowance and considers average daily nutrient intake from both foods and supplements.
RDA recommendations for specific gender and age groups should meet the nutrient needs of 9798% of healthy individuals (
Here are the RDAs for vitamin C :
|Adult women||75 mg|
|Adult men||90 mg|
|Pregnant women||85 mg|
|Breastfeeding women||120 mg|
In addition to the RDA recommendations for vitamin C, the Food and Drug Administration has issued a recommended Daily Value .
The DV was developed for food and supplement labels. It helps you determine the percentage of nutrients in a single serving of food, compared with the daily requirements. On food labels, this is displayed as %DV .
Currently, the recommended DV for vitamin C for adults and children aged 4 and above is 60 mg regardless of gender. However, in January 2020, this will increase to 90 mg .
The RDA for Vitamin C ranges from 1575 mg for children, 75 mg for adult women, 90 mg for adult men, and 85120 mg for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Vitamin C is essential for overall health and wellness, and the nutrient may particularly benefit certain conditions.
The vitamin is especially helpful for immune health, as it supports your immune systems cellular function .
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How To Prepare Foods To Retain Vitamin C
Vitamin C can be lost from foods during preparation, cooking or storage. To prevent loss of vitamin C, do the following:
- Serve fruits and vegetables raw whenever possible.
- Steam, boil or simmer foods in a very small amount of water, or microwave them for the shortest time possible.
- Cook potatoes in their skins. Be sure to wash the dirt off the outside of the potato.
- Store cut, raw fruits and vegetables in an airtight container and refrigerate. Do not soak or store in water.
How Much Vitamin C Per Day Is Best
According to NIH, the recommended allowance of vitamin C ranges between 15mg and 75mg for children, 90mg for adult men and 75mg for adult women. Women who are pregnant or lactating should consume more up to 120mg per day. Smokers need an extra 35mg per day.
Image source: NIH fact sheet for professionals
Usually you can get enough vitamin C from a varied diet that includes lots of fruit and veg but you can also take a supplement. Most multivitamin supplements contain vitamin C, or alternatively you can take it on its own.
When you look at the label on the supplement, you may see the vitamin listed as ascorbic acid, ascorbic acid with bioflavonoids, or sodium ascorbate. A supplement that contains ascorbic acid is a good choice, as this is a form of vitamin C that is easier for the body to absorb.
While serious vitamin C deficiency is now rare, certain health conditions make deficiency more likely. These include AIDS, cancer, and tuberculosis.
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/7the Recommended Daily Intake Of Zinc
The recommended dietary allowance for zinc in men above 19 years is 11 mg a day and for women, it is 8 mg. During pregnancy and lactation, the requirement of zinc slightly increases. Pregnancy and breastfeeding women must take slightly more at 11 mg and 12 mg of zinc respectively. Taking high amounts of zinc might cause fever, coughing, stomach pain, fatigue, and many other problems. Consuming more than 100 mg of supplemental zinc daily for 10 or more years increases the risk of prostate cancer. Up to 40 mg of zinc is considered safe for consumption.
Which Foods Are Best For Vitamin C
Most fruits and vegetables contain some vitamin C however, certain varieties are particularly valuable sources of the nutrient. These are:
Vegetables: Peppers, tomatoes, potatoes , and green vegetables such as broccoli and brussels sprouts.
Fruit: Oranges and orange juice, other citrus fruits, strawberries, and blackcurrants.
Its important to be aware that processing and/or cooking can reduce or destroy the vitamin C in a food. Boiling vegetables is especially harmful. So try light cooking and eating some of your fruit and veg raw for optimum vitamin C levels.
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How Much Vitamin D Do You Need
Despite widespread assertions in the popular and scientific press that many Americans have a vitamin D deficiency, the term “deficiency” isn’t strictly accurate. The official definition of a vitamin deficiency means that specific health problems stem solely from the lack of a specific nutrient. An actual vitamin D deficiency results in bone disease, such as rickets, which is rare in the United States.
On the other hand, lower-than-optimal levels of specific vitamins, including vitamin D, may increase your risk of numerous health problems, even though they are not solely responsible for these problems. “Insufficiency” may be a better term for these lower levels than “vitamin D deficiency”.
So far, the most clearly established benefit of vitamin D is that it helps the body absorb calcium and therefore promotes healthy bones. However, a steady drumbeat of studies beginning in the 1980s started to build a case that low blood levels of D were connected with a variety of chronic health problems, leading to claims by a number of researchers that the RDA for D was way too low. The confusion and controversy surrounding optimal vitamin D intake and blood values prompted the U.S. and Canadian governments to request that the Institute of Medicine review the evidence on vitamin D and calcium and update the DRIs.
To learn more about the vitamins and minerals you need to stay healthy, read , a Special Health Report from Harvard Medical School.
Why Garlic With Vitamin C Works
What do you get when you mix two of the best known, easily available and most potent healthy food items in the world a killer combination .
When taken together, garlic and Vitamin C will make your food delicious.
It is really difficult to avoid these two substances in food. Garlic and Vitamin C have been used in food since times immemorial and even the ancient Indians, Chinese, Egyptians and Babylonians knew they need these two in their food.
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What Does Vitamin C Do In Your Body
We now know that the reason those sailors benefitted from their lemon rations was that the vitamin C they received helped to keep their bodies fit and healthy in numerous ways. Lets take a look at some of the health-building properties of vitamin C:
Cell Protection: Vitamin C is an antioxidant, meaning that it protects your cells from damage by harmful substances called free radicals. The vitamin binds with and neutralises the free radicals, preventing them from damaging the tissues in your body.
Collagen Production: Collagen is the bodys major building protein that is essential for your internal organs and connective tissues to function properly. Vitamin C helps to ensure that the body keeps producing enough collagen to maintain healthy skin, bones, and blood vessels.
Immune System: Vitamin C works to boost your immunity and help your body fight off infection. Although, as is sometimes thought, it cant prevent you catching a cold, studies suggest that vitamin C can reduce the duration of cold symptoms.
Wound Healing: If you injure yourself then vitamin C plays a role in your recovery and the swift healing of any wounds.
Iron Absorption: Following a vegetarian or vegan diet? You may be interested to know that vitamin C helps the body to absorb non-haem iron that is, iron from plant sources, which is usually more difficult for the body to use. This can prevent iron-deficiency anaemia.
Can A Vitamin C Supplement Really Keep You From Getting Sick
Despite it’s popularity as a remedy for the common cold, there’s actually no evidence to suggest that a large dose of vitamin C can actually prevent one or any other type of illness, for that matter.
And while you may have heard that a large dose of vitamin C can slightly reduce the duration of a cold, this only applies if you take that large dose every singleday of the year even when you’re not sick. This means that if you rip that vitamin C packet open after your symptoms begin, there’s no evidence to suggest it’ll actually shorten the length of your cold.
As it turns out, boosting your immune system is more complicated than just downing a packet or a pill. And while vitamin C does play an important role in supporting your immune system, it doesn’t take megadoses like the ones found in supplements which often contain 1667% more vitamin C than you actually need every day.
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What Evidence Is There To Support Taking Vitamin C For Covid
There have been hundreds of studies investigating vitamin C, many of which have conflicting results. One of the biggest problems with vitamin C studies is that most do not measure vitamin C concentrations before or after supplementation. Supplementation is unlikely to show an effect in people whose vitamin C levels are already high.
COVID-19 is a new disease, and we are still learning about it. But several studies in other infections or conditions suggest it may be beneficial in certain groups of people, particularly those already deficient in vitamin C who develop COVID-19. Currently, at least two trials are underway specifically investigating the use of vitamin C to treat severe COVID-19, one in New York and one in China.
Beneficial effects of vitamin C supplementation have been reported for
- Elderly people with acute respiratory infections
- Recurrent acute respiratory distress syndrome
- Reducing the severity and duration of the common cold
- Reducing the length of hospital stay and symptoms in elderly patients with pneumonia
- Reducing the duration of mechanical ventilation in people in ICU
- Preventing the common cold in people who are vitamin C deficient
- Preventing the incidence of pneumonia in people who are vitamin C deficient.
- Studies have shown that excretion of vitamin C is decreased during infections, such as the common cold, suggesting that more is utilized during times of need.
Recommended Sodium Intake For Older Adults
Sodium is another important mineral. In most Americans diets, sodium primarily comes from salt . Whenever you add salt to your food, you’re adding sodium. But the Dietary Guidelines shows that most of the sodium we eat doesnt come from our saltshakers its added to many foods during processing or preparation. We all need some sodium, but too much over time can lead to high blood pressure, which can raise your risk of having a heart attack or stroke.
How much sodium is okay? People 51 and older should reduce their sodium intake to 2,300 mg each day. That is about one teaspoon of salt and includes sodium added during manufacturing or cooking as well as at the table when eating. If you have high blood pressure or prehypertension, limiting sodium intake to 1,500 mg per day, about 2/3 teaspoon of salt, may be helpful. Preparing your own meals at home without using a lot of processed foods or salt will allow you to control how much sodium you get. Try using less salt when cooking, and dont add salt before you take the first bite. If you make this change slowly, you will get used to the difference in taste. Also look for grocery products marked low sodium, unsalted, no salt added, sodium free, or salt free. Also check the Nutrition Facts Label to see how much sodium is in a serving.
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