Better Together: How to Balance Your Vitamin and Mineral Intake

vitamin b12

Introduction

Do you get enough of every essential vitamin and mineral every day? Chances are, some days, you come up short. Maintaining a healthy and completely balanced diet is hard—for many people, it feels impossible.

However, you can consume all the necessary vitamins and minerals without making any drastic lifestyle changes by following these three simple guidelines:

Be Intentional About Diversifying the Food You Eat

While everyone has their favorite go-to meals that they make nearly every week, diet diversification is key to getting all the right nutrients. To add variety to your diet, try one of the following tactics:

    • Target specific vitamins and minerals for each snack, drink, or meal you consume. For example, you may choose to focus on vitamin C for breakfast and drink a glass of orange juice alongside an omelet with red and green bell peppers. Then, for a snack, you could target calcium and have a spinach salad topped with cheese and almonds.
    • At least once a day, have “super” snacks, drinks, or meals that include a wide range of vitamins in minerals in one serving. For example, you could have pan-seared salmon over a kale and apple salad for dinner. This meal packs in vitamins A, B6, B12, and C as well as calcium, copper, manganese, potassium, and selenium.

Track Your Vitamin and Mineral Intake

When it comes to vitamins and minerals, it’s important not to consume too little (or too much) of each essential element. To stay in tip-top shape, try recording your meals using an app that tracks vitamin and mineral intake. For example, the MyFitnessPal app from Under Armour calculates your vitamin intake on top of calories and macros.

Take Supplements to Make up for Insufficiencies in Your Diet

After tracking your vitamin and mineral intake for a while, you may notice that you have trouble meeting your goals because of your food preferences. To make up for specific deficiencies, you may want to consider taking supplements.

A great way to introduce taking vitamins to your lifestyle is to figure out which health areas you’re concerned about the most. Then, you can intentionally target those areas with the right supplements. The following list will explain which vitamin and minerals or supplement combinations can help improve specific areas of your health.

Be sure to contact your doctor before starting any new supplement habits. Seeking professional guidance is particularly important if you plan to take more than one type of vitamin a day.

Heart Health

For heart health, the following pairings will yield maximum benefits: Vitamin B6 and magnesium, sodium and potassium, vitamin C and iron, vitamin D and magnesium, and vitamin B6, B12, and folate.

Bone Health

You can support strong and healthy bones with these combinations: vitamin D and calcium, and vitamin K and magnesium

Immune Health

Immune health is one area of health that almost everyone wants to focus on, mainly because it can directly prevent you from getting sick. To improve immune health, you can take: vitamin B12 and folate or zinc and copper. Note that when taking zinc plus copper, it’s important to take them properly and maintain a healthy balance between the two minerals.

Digestive Health

Improving digestive health requires four essential vitamins: vitamins A, B, C, and D.

Eye Health

To take action and prevent problems with your vision, take vitamin A, E, C, B1, or a variety of B vitamins.

Conclusion: A Healthy Lifestyle Requires Balance

When focusing on your health, finding balance is the key to your success. By following these three tips, you can maximize your efforts and ensure you get all the vitamins and minerals your body needs.

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