Vitamins. Everyone has heard of them, most people know they need a healthy balance of them, but many individuals also have a lot of misconceptions about the nutrients they need. Recently, reporters with the Huffington Post spoke to a number of health experts who explained some of the myths and facts about vitamins, and what people really need to know in order to have the perfect balance of nutrients.
"There’s so much interest in nutrition today," said dietitian Joan Salge Blake, a professor at Boston University, quoted by the news source. "Baby boomers, especially, are interested in living longer and better than the generation before. They are savvy about seeking out information; they follow health news and use the Internet to learn more. I think many are willing to do whatever it takes to stay healthy."
You always need a healthy diet
The information provider stated that some people believe that if they take a multivitamin, they don't need to eat a well-rounded diet because the supplement is filling in the nutrition gaps. In reality, Blake said, vitamins can't replace a good meal. When adults eat healthily, and get a good amount of nutrients from food, then they can trust that their bodies will absorb what they need.
Vitamins are meant to enhance a healthy diet and provide more of the nutrients people need each day – not all of them. The news source suggested that people take their vitamins with food. When vitamins are taken on an empty stomach, the acids may dissolve the pill and send its nutrients unevenly to different organs, making them less efficient. When taken with a meal, vitamins bond with the food and offer the best chances of proper absorption.
Many aren't better than one
According to the news source, for most healthy adults a multivitamin is sufficient to help them get the nutrients they need. However, there are some exceptions in which people may want to take single-nutrient supplements. These include calcium, vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acid supplements.
Everyday Health states that all vitamins are needed in the body. However, it's not just vitamins people need, but minerals as well. The information provider recommended that people make sure to get sufficient amounts of iron, copper and zinc, all of which can be found in either food or supplement form.