With the COVID-19 upon us, we are restricted to the confines of our home with little to no contact with the outside world. This means that all outdoor activities such as gym, jogging, or even a stroll in the park are subdued.
Our bodies become accustomed to the domesticated environment, and if we do not keep tabs on our health, the chances are that we might even deteriorate our well-being. Dietary supplements are a great way to keep those nutritional balances in check. Any discrepancies in diet can be fulfilled through these supplements.
But it gets overwhelming in deciding which supplement is best for you and how much do you need to take. Luckily, we’ve got you covered. Downbelow we are discussing all the supplements that are essential for your well-being. But do bear in mind that you must consult this with a healthcare professional to make sure you’re taking the correct supplement at its recommended dose.
Fish Oil is an essential component of our functioning systems. It is abundant in Omega 3 fatty acids, which incorporate eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).
Unfortunately, our bodies do not produce EPA and DHA on their own, so it’s imperative that we obtain them from external sources. Both EPA and DHA have shown to promote fetal growth and immunity. They help lower inflammation and have an overall effect on the cardiovascular system of our body.
A study shows that omega-three fatty acids are essential for the health of our heart and brain. Other than that, they are shown to aid weight loss, support eye health, and even promote healthy skin. The suggested dosage of EPA and DHA combined according to a source is around 250-500mg.
Contrary to popular belief, the bacteria that is inside our system is beneficial for us. The flora in our gut protects the lining of our tract and provides immunity to combat any infection.
The gut bacteria play a role in both innate and adaptive immunity. A study shows that there is a direct correlation between your gut health and your immune abilities.
Probiotics are the living organisms that help improve your gut health, which then makes you less susceptible to diseases. There are various ways to incorporate probiotics in your diet either by eating yogurt or taking it in the form of a supplement.
Different strains of Bifidobacterium, Lactobacillus, and Saccharomyces as probiotics have shown to have beneficial effects. A supplement can have a mixture of different strains. Probiotics are seen to have potential health benefits, including treating antibiotic-associated diarrhea and acute infectious diarrhea. The suggested dosage, according to a source is ranging between 1 billion to 10 billion colony forming units, which are contained in one or two capsules divided over several days a week.
One of the downsides to remaining indoors all the time is that you don’t get enough sun exposure. With that being said, it is imperative to get your share of Vitamin D. Vitamin D is what enables calcium and phosphorus to get absorbed into our blood. It makes our bones durable and less susceptible to hypocalcemic tetany.
It is fat-soluble and helps in bone remodeling via osteoblasts and osteoclasts. Apart from bone health, Vitamin D also reduces inflammation, regulates cell growth, and neuromuscular function.
There are two main types of Vitamin D – D2 and D3. Vitamin D3 is mainly found in animals and is the type that is produced in your skin on sun exposure. Vitamin D2 comes from plant sources. A study shows that D3 is the preferred supplement for the masses.
The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) or Adequate Intake (AI) for Vitamin D according to a source is 15 mcg/day for ages 1-70.
Magnesium is an essential component of our body that is not produced inherently. It synthesizes fatty acids, regulates nerve impulse transmission, and metabolism.
A study shows that Magnesium helps manage stress levels. Most of our population suffer from its deficiency.
Magnesium is known to help with insomnia and other sleep-related problems in the elderly. Being a co-factor in many enzyme reactions, it regulates biochemical systems in our body. Magnesium is essential for oxidative phosphorylation and glycolysis.
It is needed for the synthesis of RNA, DNA, and glutathione. Magnesium has shown promising benefits in managing osteoporosis, heart disease, and asthma.
The Recommended Dietary Allowance(RDA) or Adequate Intake(AI) according to a source for Magnesium is
- Men age 19-30: 400 mg/day,
- Men age 31 and up: 420 mg/day,
- Women age 19-30: 310 mg/day,
- Women age 31 and up: 320 mg/day
In essence, all your minerals and nutrients should be taken from your diet. There is some debate about whether multivitamins should be taken every day or not as a means to preserve your health.
The Physicians’ Health Study II was conducted as a randomized clinical trial to evaluate a multivitamin which incorporates the vital thirty-one vitamins and minerals.
The results were as follows:
Vision: It turned out that those taking the multivitamin were at a lesser risk of developing cataracts.
Cancer: there was a reduction in the chance of developing cancer by 8%
Cardiovascular disease: no evidence supported that the multivitamin offered any protection against heart attacks or strokes.
Brain: no evidence to suggest that it helped reduce deteriorating mental skill.
That being said, if you do opt for multivitamins, look for the ones that contain Vitamin A, C, E, magnesium, calcium, and Vitamins B1, B2, B6, and B12. Ideally, a multivitamin should be taken just once a day or as per your physicians’ recommendation.
Points to remember before purchasing supplements
- Now that we have gone over the essential nutrients for our health, it is crucial to bear in mind that there is no replacement for food intake. Always prioritize obtaining nutrition from your meals.
- Start with a lower dose of the supplement and then gradually increase as per your physician’s recommendation.
- Invest in quality supplements.
- Always consult a health professional before taking any supplements.