Before you start taking dietary supplements it is always best to understand your specific health needs and if a dietary supplement might meet those needs. Do you need to take dietary supplements? The answer depends on your eating and lifestyle habits and some factors beyond your control, such as your age. The following factors will help you decide if a dietary supplement is necessary:genfZ0plus review
You have a poor diet: If you eat less than five total servings of fruits and vegetables daily, it may be difficult to get all of the vitamins and minerals your body needs. Also, if you eat only one or two times a day, you may be limiting the number and variety of servings you eat from the various food groups.
You are a vegetarian: If you are a vegetarian, you may not consume enough calcium, iron, zinc and vitamins B-12 and D. You can get these nutrients naturally from nonmeat sources, such as fortified soy products, green leafy vegetables, legumes, whole-grain products and nuts. If you are not able to regularly consume these foods, dietary supplements may be necessary.
You consume less than 1,200 calories a day: Low-calorie diets limit the types and amounts of foods you eat and, in turn, the types and amounts of nutrients you receive. Unless recommended and monitored by a doctor, a low-calorie diet is not recommended.
You have a medical condition that affects how your body absorbs, uses or excretes nutrients. If your diet has limited variety because of food allergies or intolerance to certain foods, such as dairy products, you may benefit from a dietary supplement. Also, if you have a disease of your liver, gallbladder, intestines or pancreas, or if you have had surgery on your digestive tract, you may not be able to digest and absorb nutrients properly. In such cases, your doctor may recommend that you take a dietary supplement. He or she will be able to advise you on which will work best for your condition.
You are in postmenopausal state: After menopause, women experience a sudden drop in estrogen levels, which increases bone loss. To keep bones strong and to decrease bone loss, you need calcium as well as vitamin D — the vitamin essential for absorbing calcium. Women who do not obtain enough calcium and vitamin D through foods could benefit from taking a calcium supplement with vitamin D.
You are a woman who has heavy menstrual bleeding. If you have heavy menstrual bleeding, you may need additional iron to replace the iron depleted by blood loss. Iron deficiency can lead to anemia, a condition in which blood is low in hemoglobin, the substance which carries oxygen to tissues.
You are pregnant or trying to become pregnant: During this time, you need more of certain nutrients, especially calcium, folate and iron. Folate is needed very early in pregnancy to help protect your baby against neural tube birth defects, such as incomplete closure of the spine. Iron helps prevent fatigue by helping you make the red blood cells necessary to deliver oxygen to you and your baby. Your doctor can recommend a dietary supplement. It’s important to start taking a supplement before becoming pregnant.
You use tobacco products: Tobacco decreases the absorption of many vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, folate, magnesium and calcium. But dietary supplements won’t make up for the major health risks caused by smoking. The safest option is to avoid using all tobacco products whenever possible.
You drink excessively: Long-term excessive alcohol consumption can impair the digestion and absorption of several vitamins and minerals, including vitamin B-1, iron, zinc, magnesium and folate. In addition, you may substitute alcohol for food, resulting in a diet lacking in essential nutrients. Excessive drinking is defined as more than two drinks a day for men under age 65 and more than one drink a day for men over 65 and women. Taking dietary supplements, however, will not make up for the major health risks caused by excessive alcohol consumption.
If you are generally healthy and eat a wide variety of foods, including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean meats, you most likely will not need to take a dietary supplement.
But if you seek assurance that you are getting all the vitamins and minerals you need and you do not mind the added expense and daily routine of taking a supplement, using the standard vitamin and mineral supplement with 100 percent of the Daily Value for the various vitamins and minerals is generally fine. However, it is always a good idea to talk with your doctor before taking any supplements, as he or she knows your history and specific situation best.