The health and nutrition industry is one of the most booming industries in today’s world. A lot of people are extremely conscious of the way they look. Anti-aging creams and wonder pills (as they are called) are constantly seen on television promising weight loss or youthful skin. Food replacement supplements and protein shakes are aggressively marketed. Multivitamin supplements are being readily given to patients.
So, the question is …are Vitamin Supplements Good or Bad?
The answer is neither Yes or No. The reason being that the answer depends on whom is Vitamin supplements suitable for and for whom it isn’t.
Firstly, nothing and absolutely nothing can substitute a well balanced diet. A well balanced diet contains far more nutrition than the vitamins and minerals that we know of. Besides this, they also contain various enzymes, and plant based chemicals (phytochemicals) which promote the normal growth and development of tissues. These things can’t be put into a pill.
Having said that, the following people would require taking vitamin supplements:
Woman planning on getting pregnant or are due for delivery should supplement themselves with folic acid under the supervision of a doctor. The use of folic acid helps to prevent Spina Bifida (improper vertebral bone formation around the spinal cord of the child.
Women who stay mostly indoors or cover themselves with dark clothing don’t get exposed to sufficient sunlight. This would lead to a deficiency in Vitamin D and would require the intake of Vitamin D Supplement.
Vegetarians do not eat any form of meat. This may lead to a deficiency of Vitamin B12 and may require supplementation.
People who have been sick for a long period of time may find it difficult to eat certain foods. People on weight loss diets also go to extremes to avoid certain foods containing fats. In the process they may miss on certain vital nutrients. Such people are prime candidates for Vitamin Supplementation.
People taking part in sports or active weight training would need supplementation. People involved in weight training and strenuous exercises require good amounts of protein intake which can be supplemented by a high protein intake.
Vitamin supplements are only supposed to supplement (add on) to the existing balanced meal and not replace it. My advice, eat nutritious food and consume vitamin supplements only when you are deficient. Otherwise, there is no such need of additional supplementation.
Lastly, it is best to consult your physician before you start taking any vitamin supplements in order t avoid possible side effects. Till then, stay healthy and eat well!