Posted on June 17th
Written by WildernessAthlete on July 1, 2010
Many medical journals, newspapers, and popular magazines have reported new findings related to vitamins, minerals, and other nutritional supplements. They reported on their benefits in the maintenance of health and in the prevention of illness. For example, a recent issue of Prevention magazine contained an article about the health benefits of the top 10 vitamins and herbs. In this article, the multivitamin was listed as the single most important nutritional supplement for everyone to take.
One of the most commonly asked questions is “Why should I take a multivitamin supplement?” It is estimated that seven out of ten Americans take dietary supplements. Why? Because vitamins and minerals are essential nutrients that the human body alone can not manufacture in sufficient quantities to provide the foundation for all normal biological functions. Vitamins and minerals are required for normal metabolism, growth, and general well being. A single deficiency of any vitamin or mineral can endanger the whole body. Many people believe they are eating the ‘right’ foods, and getting the proper amount of essential nutrients in this way. And, of course, eating a balanced diet is one way to obtain the vitamins and minerals you need.
The problem is, few of us get a truly balanced diet. According to one U.S. Government survey of 21,000 people, not a single person obtained 100 percent of the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for each of ten basic nutrients. Processing, storing, or even cooking can reduce the vitamin content of foods. Foods can also be adversely affected by chemical fertilizers, pesticides, and soil conditions. Nutrients are also adversely affected by heavy smoking, alcohol consumption, and numerous health conditions including obesity and chronic illness.
Your multivitamin should contain a full range of vitamins and minerals to meet essential nutritional needs. For example, the average diet frequently provides less than the recommended daily allowance for zinc. A low-dose supplement (15 mg per day) can fill in dietary gaps. Statistics show that over 65% of American diets are deficient in Zinc. Zinc is considered the most important mineral for proper immune system function. Magnesium is also an important element available in multivitamin form, and is also in a majority of American diets. A lack of this essential mineral can lead to fatigue, abnormal heart rhythms, muscle weakness and spasm, depression, loss of appetite, listlessness, and potassium depletion.
A recent study, published in the Western Journal of Medicine, showed a correlation between vitamin intake, prevention, and health care costs. The research team studied the effect of vitamin intake on the relative risk estimates for birth defects, premature birth, and coronary heart disease, to estimate potential annual cost reductions in U.S. hospitalization charges. Amazingly, nearly $20 billion inhospital charges were potentially avoidable with daily use of folic acid and zinc-containing multivitamins by all women of childbearing age and daily vitamin E supplementation by those over age fifty.
A good multivitamin with pharmaceutical grade vitamins and minerals accompanied with high quality herbs can give you reassurance that you are obtaining the proper amounts of vitamins and minerals needed for good health. Whatever your specific nutritional needs are, Wilderness Athlete’s Multivitamin should be the foundation of any nutritional supplement or vitamin regimen and will significantly increase the effectiveness of the other supplements you take. Protect yourself from the inside out.
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