Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

Seven Supplements to Stay Healthy

Leaflet_Softgels_final_14oct09_02_FrontSupplement as the name suggests is an addition to nutrition. Ideally, we should get all nutrients from food, but this doesn’t happen in real life, where stress, deadlines, overdose of tea and coffee, smoking and junk food get in. Hence, recommendations of food-guide pyramid become text-book matter, which hardly get translated in real life. People who abide by food-guide-pyramid too need to worry, because the soil in which crops are grown has become depleted with minerals and each serving of fruits, and vegetable fails to deliver the nutrition as promised. In that scenario, which sounds like a slice of life from all of us, nutritional gaps build.

Do I need to worry about nutritional gaps?

“No, not as long as you are young,” says Jyoti Arora, Team Leader, Dietics with Artemis. “In the youth body has enough reserves to counter any kind of nutritional deficiency, but the effects begin to show as you age,” adds she. Nutrition affects our immune system, organ function, hormonal balance and cellular metabolism. The nutritional deficiency comes first, followed some years later by symptoms, like decreased stamina and accelerated ageing, which lead in time to disease. No wonder, in the middle age, you become affected with various lifestyle ailments. Moreover, we all carry genetic database of chronic diseases about which we can’t do anything and nutritional deficiency amplifies the onset of these diseases.

Which supplements should you take?

x-vitalman-small red1. Multivitamins:  To start with a good quality multi-vitamin and mineral tablet is enough to take care of your nutritional deficiencies and helps enhance your immune health too. Dr Hansa Gupta, Gurgaon based cardiologist shares, “ My immunity had nose dived and I was catching cold pretty often. I started taking a good multi-vitamin and in six months time, I felt that my immunity has improved.”

vitamin-C-5002. Vitamin C: Usually, smokers are low on vitamin C, an essential vitamin to keep you in good health and a super antioxidant too. Hence, replenishing the lost vitamin C is the best idea and a supplement wouldn’t hurt in the process. Moreover, if you are prone to common cold start taking vitamin C, a month or two before the seasonal change and you’ll be surprised at the results.

calcium-citrate3. Calcium supplements: Women are usually low on calcium and iron, says Dr Geeta Chadha, Delhi’s well-known gynaecologist. As women age, mostly in their menopausal years, there is loss of calcium content in bones, making it susceptible to fractures. A good calcium supplement does a lot of good.

menocare4. Menopausal women need to be careful about their diet. Since menopause (cessation of periods) doesn’t happen overnight, there are lots of hormonal upheavals going on before its onset. Estrogen, primary female hormone dwindles and supplementing it with required supplement like soy helps women tide over menopausal years comfortably.

glucosamine5. Glucosamine Chondriotin: As years roll by, men and women experience increased arthritic pains, stiff knees and reduced mobility which can be a result of stiffening of cartilage. Mrs Jha, 50, homemaker says, “I was suffering from knee pains and sought orthopaedic’s advice. Mobility of my joints improved with regular use of Glucosamine.” Ask your doctor for Glucosamine and Chondrotin, an essential supplement for mobility of joints.

Fish-body-oil6. Fish Body Oil:  If statistics are to be believed heart disease is one of the biggest killers in Indians today. The first symptoms of impending heart disease are cholesterol numbers. It’s widely proven that having Fish Oil supplement, a natural source of Omega 3 Fatty Acids can improve cholesterol profile by lowering LDL (bad) cholesterol and improving HDL (good) cholesterol.

coenzyme7.  Co Q 10: Take Co Q10 for a steady heartbeat. As heart muscle weakens, it places an increased demand for Co Q10, an essential ingredient for healthy heart and supplementing this nutrient can provide your heart with the nutrition it wants. Moreover, Coenzyme is also an excellent antioxidant.

Archana Darshan

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