When & Why You May Need a Specialty Nutritional Supplement
Many people believe that eating a well balanced diet provides all the vitamins and minerals necessary for good health. In ideal circumstances this is the case, but in reality there are many reasons why you may need vitamin supplements to cope with living in this twenty-first century environment. Taking vitamins when required is a safe and sure method of optimising your dietary sources of nutrients. Here are 22 good reasons:
- Poor Digestion
Even when your food intake is good, inefficient digestion can limit your body’s uptake of vitamins. Low stomach acid levels, poor gall bladder function, or simply not chewing well enough or eating too fast result in larger than normal food particle size – too large to allow the complete action of digestive enzymes. If you can’t absorb the nutrients your body is clearly not going to benefit.
Drinking too much alcohol is known to damage the liver and pancreas, which are vital to digestion and metabolism. It can also damage the lining of the intestinal tract and adversely affect the absorption of nutrients. Not to mention requiring increased levels of specific nutrients to clear the alcohol from you system and ultimately leading to sub-clinical malnutrition.
Smoking too much tobacco is also an irritant to the digestive tract and increases the metabolic requirements of vitamin C, by at least 30% over that of the typical requirements of a non-smoker.
- Fad Diets
Bizarre diets that miss out on whole groups of food can be seriously lacking in vitamins. Even the popular low fat diets, if taken to an extreme, can be vitamin deficient. Vegetarian diets that exclude meat and other animal sources must be very skilfully planned to avoid vitamin deficiency.
Lengthy cooking or reheating of meat and vegetables can oxidize and destroy heat susceptible vitamins such as the B group, C and E. Light steaming is preferable. Some vitamins, such as vitamin B6 can be destroyed by irradiation from microwaves.
- Food Storage
Freezing food significantly reduces its levels of vitamin E. Vitamin C, which is normally present in such foods as paw paws, oranges and capsicums, oxidises rapidly once these fruits are cut, juiced, cooked or stored in direct sunlight or near heat. Vitamin C is important for good immune function.
- Convenience Foods
A diet overly dependent of highly refined carbohydrates, such as sugar, white flour, and white rice, places greater demand on B-group vitamins to process these carbohydrates. An unbalanced diet contributes to such conditions as irritability, lethargy and sleep disorders. Many common sources of vitamin E, such as bread and oils are nowadays highly processed, so the vitamin E content is significantly reduced or missing totally. This increases the shelf life of the food, but lowers nutrient levels.
Some antibiotics kill off friendly bacteria in the gut, which would normally be producing B-group vitamins to be absorbed through the intestinal walls. Such deficiencies can result in a variety of nervous conditions. Not to mention you lose a range of other benefits these ‘symbiots’ provide including: transportation of minerals, supporting immune function, looking after the health of mucous membranes, sending ‘happy’ hormonal messages to your brain and producing nitric oxide a potent vasodilator to open up small capillaries optimising blood flow.
- Food Sensitivities
The omission of whole food groups from the diet, as in the case of individuals sensitive to gluten or lactose, can mean the loss of significant dietary sources of nutrients, such as thiamine, riboflavin or calcium. Tip: get help to restore digestive function and watch your food sensitivities disappear.
10. Crop Nutrient Losses
Some agricultural soils are deficient in trace elements. Decades of intensive agriculture can overwork and deplete the soils, unless all the soil nutrients, including trace elements are regularly replaced (and they usually are not). In one US Government survey, levels of essential minerals in crops were found to have declined by up to 68% over a four-year period in the 1970’s.
11. Accidents and Illnesses
Burns, broken bones, infections and surgery can lead to a loss of some essential nutrients, and increase the need for other nutrients involved in the cellular repair mechanism.
Chemical, physical and emotional stresses (even such things as air pollution and EMF’s) increase the body’s requirements for some vitamins and minerals. Minerals are a consumable in the body and you use around 90% of what you consume everyday under normal conditions which makes it very easy to become deficient over time.
Research has demonstrated that up to 60% of women suffering from symptoms of premenstrual tension, such as headaches, irritability, bloating, breast tenderness, lethargy and depression can benefit from supplementation.
Rapid growth spurts such as in the teenage years, particularly in girls, place high demands on nutritional resources to support the accelerated physical, biochemical and emotional development in this age group.
15. Pregnant Women
Pregnancy creates higher than average demand for nutrients, to ensure healthy growth of the baby and a comfortable pregnancy for the mother. Professional assessment of nutritional requirements during pregnancy should be sought.
16. Oral Contraceptives
Oral contraceptives can decrease absorption of folic acid and increase the need for vitamin B6, and possibly vitamin C, zinc and riboflavin.
17. Light Eaters
Some people eat very sparingly, even without weight reduction goals. An average woman maintains her weight on 7560 kj per day, at which level her diet is likely to be low in thiamine, calcium and iron.
18. The Elderly
The aged have been shown to have a low intake of a range of vitamins and minerals. Fibre intake is often low. Possible causes include impaired sense of taste and smell, reduced secretion of digestive enzymes, chronic disease and maybe, physical impairment.
19. Lack of Sunlight
Invalids, shift workers, and people whose exposure to sunlight may be minimal can suffer from insufficient amounts of vitamin D, required for calcium metabolism. Ultraviolet light is the stimulus to vitamin D formation in the skin. It is even blocked by cloud, fog, smog, ordinary window glass curtains and clothing.
Wide fluctuations in individual nutrient requirements from the official recommended average vitamin and mineral intakes are common.
21. Low Body Reserves
Although the body is able to store reserves of certain vitamins such as A and E, most people are so deficient that they have none spare to store, and many vitamins simply cannot be stored by the body.
Athletes consume large amounts of food and experience considerable stress. Tests on Australian Olympic athletes and A-grade football players, for example, have shown wide-ranging vitamin deficiencies.
Why You May Need to See a Naturopath?
Naturopaths have extensive training in herbal medicine and nutritional therapies and are required to keep up with the latest findings in herb, drug and nutrient interactions. They are knowledgeable about potentially harmful interactions and can help assess the right herbs or supplements and the right dosage for a condition. Before taking herbs and nutritional supplements it is advisable to consult a qualified health-care professional (such as a naturopath).
Furthermore it is especially important to receive comprehensive assessment, including diagnostic testing and ongoing support if you have a significant health condition or if you are taking any medications.
See our www.corenaturopathics.com.au or call us today on 1300 855 008 to make a booking.
Why Use ‘Practitioner Only’ Products?
Practitioner only or Professional only products are supported by scientific evidence, to achieve successful clinical outcomes. They are the highest quality supplements available.
This is not always the case with retail products. Similar over the counter products may be cheaper; however they can sometimes contain unsuitable additives, inferior quality raw materials and are not always formulated to achieve optimum results. Practitioner only products are guaranteed for quality tested ingredients, are synergistically designed to treat and target a specific condition and uses the optimum dose range and potency to achieve the desired therapeutic effect.
At your service,
The Team at Core Naturopathics.