Are you missing certain nutrients in your diet? Micronutrients are vitamins and minerals that enable the body to produce enzymes, hormones, and other substances required for normal, healthy development and overall maintenance. A healthy diet alone often doesn’t provide the nutrients that are needed. Deficiency in any of these nutrients can cause visible and dangerous health conditions.
Many of these deficiencies are preventable through nutrition education and consumption of a healthy diet containing diverse foods, as well as food fortification and supplementation, where needed.
Understanding Which Vitamins Are Needed
The Recommended Daily Allowances (RDAs) are guidelines set by health organizations like the U.S. Food and Nutrition Board. These guidelines specify the amount of essential nutrients needed by people of different ages and genders. Your nutritional needs will vary based on age, gender, and daily activity. However, the following vitamins and minerals are recommended for most adult men and women. Daily consumption of these vital nutrients should come from a combination of food sources and supplementation.
Vitamin D: Supports healthy immune system function; bone health; and cardiovascular function.*
Sunlight exposure can increase vitamin D, however, most people don’t spend enough time in daylight to get the amount needed. Some food sources with vitamin D include fatty fish like tuna and mackerel; egg yolks; and beef liver. You can also take a vitamin D supplement to reach your recommended daily intake amount.
Magnesium: Supports calmness; healthy immune system function; cardiovascular and bone health.
Magnesium supports a variety of biological processes, including the promotion of healthy protein synthesis, muscle and nerve function, blood glucose levels, and more. Most people have lower than average magnesium levels. Eating foods with magnesium such as leafy greens; whole grains; or drinking coffee can provide a boost in magnesium. Adding in a supplement can also improve magnesium levels. Magnesium citrate is a popular form of magnesium due to its high bioavailability. Magnesium glycinate is also highly bioavailable and is less likely to cause gastrointestinal side effects for those with sensitive stomachs.
Iron: Supports cognitive health; restful sleep; cardiovascular and blood health
Iron supports healthy blood and circulation; hemoglobin formation; and the production of red blood cells that carry oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body. It’s also involved in the production of white blood cells and energy metabolism. Foods with iron include meats; poultry; fish; fortified cereals; and leafy greens like spinach. Because most women are low in iron, especially premenopausal women, adding in an iron supplement could be beneficial.
Vitamin C: Supports healthy immune function; antioxidant activity; promotes proper digestion and nutrient absorption.
Because of its antioxidant effects and healthy support of immune defenses, vitamin C is a top choice for maintaining wellness, especially during colder months. Some other benefits of vitamin C include the production of healthy collagen in the body to improve skin, joints, hair, nails and more. Citrus fruits are abundant in vitamin C. Bell peppers; broccoli; and kale are also providers of the vitamin. You can also include vitamin C supplements in your diet. Which form you choose can mean the difference in the supplement being effective. Calcium Ascorbate is a form of vitamin C with a neutral pH meaning it won’t cause more acidity. This form of vitamin C is generally better absorbed by the body.
Zinc: Supports gut-related immunity; healthy digestion and nutrient absorption.
Zinc is important to wound healing and for your sense of taste and smell. Even with a varied diet, your body doesn’t get as much zinc as it should have. Organ meats like liver are high in zinc. Also lamb, poultry, beans and nuts are good sources of zinc. Adding a supplement can be helpful in ensuring you get enough zinc daily.
If you’re not sure where to start with adding foundational vitamins to your daily routine, Nature’s Lab top sellers are suitable for a variety of wellness needs.
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Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. (2023, August 10). Vitamin D. Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements-vitamin-d/art-20363792
(2023, September 26). Which Type of Magnesium is Best. Health.com. https://www.health.com/types-of-magnesium-7853312
(2020, January 26). What Form of Vitamin C is Best? Dr. Brian Lum. https://www.drbrianlum.com/post/what-form-of-vitamin-c-is-best