What Should a Women’s Multivitamin Contain?
The term “multivitamin” tells you what should be contained—a multitude of vitamins. But which vitamins should specifically be included? Can they make a difference for women over 50?
People who can benefit from multivitamins:
A quality women’s multivitamin should contain…
Essential micronutrients — Your body needs micronutrients to keep all cylinders running.
- Other micronutrients that can benefit the body:
According to a report by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans[i], the Western diet often lacks calcium, fiber, and potassium—therefore, finding quality supplements to help fill these gaps can be a great benefit to your health.
As always, check with your health care provider, and note that a supplement is not a cure-all…it’s an addition to fill in nutritional gaps—not replace quality foods.
What Can Multivitamins Do?
Supplements and multivitamins can add some much-needed nutrients to your everyday diet. What some may not know is that a multivitamin doesn’t have to be a highly manufactured pill.
Have you ever thought of a plant-based supplement? Think about it…a plant that contains the nutrients your body needs, capsulized to make it easy to take with you wherever you go—now THAT’S a great, nutritionally-packed supplement!
The moringa tree leaves, for example, have a major concentration of many vitamins and minerals—like vitamins A, C and E, iron, magnesium, and potassium.
These micronutrients help your body by adding an extra boost of energy, helping digestion run smoothly, and helping both metabolic and respiratory systems function well.
What Multivitamins Can’t Do
Supplements can never outwork a bad diet or an unhealthy lifestyle. To get the most out of your supplements, you also need to improve the way you eat and be sure to get daily exercise.
Many people who look into using nutritional supplements are already very health-conscious people, but if you live a sedentary lifestyle or routinely eat junk food or other meals lacking in nutritional value, you aren’t helping yourself much.
You’re still giving yourself boosts with these extra nutrients, but these nutritional boosts don’t give you as much of a benefit as they would if you add them to the routine of a healthy lifestyle.
Furthermore, a supplement alone is never enough to achieve your health goals. They won’t make you automatically lose weight, nor improve your energy levels or concentration alone.
Supplements—such as a good multivitamin—are tools to add to your overall nutritional arsenal and only a part of the big picture to living a healthy lifestyle.
What Should I Know Before Buying Supplements?
Would you ever throw your money in the garbage? Unfortunately, there are many supplements available today that make claims and promises that they simply cannot keep. Because of this, throwing your money away could be more beneficial to your health than taking some of these supplements.
Sadly, product manufacturers often add ingredients to the supplements that can take away from the nutritional benefits. Therefore, if you want to get the most bang for your buck, it’s essential to do a little research before making a purchase.
Here are some things to consider:
- Is the company reputable?
Look for a company that has the heart for improving the health of a nation. Reputable companies have a philosophy that reflects their genuine interest to have multifaceted benefits to health, the environment, and the economy.
- Are there any warnings about the product?
You can always search the FDA’s website to identify any warnings or advisories. They also keep a full list of recalled products. You can also do a Google search to see if there are any health risks associated with the supplement.
- Are there ingredients added that could be harmful?
Too often, there are fillers or artificial colors added to the supplement products. Ingredients such as hydrogenated oil or dyes are found in the vitamins and minerals to make them more appealing to the eye of the customer.
It’s important to purchase a product that is not only safe, but only contains ingredients that do not negate the benefits.
- Is it a “miracle” product?
If it claims to cure or instantly transform your health or your life, it’s likely too good to be true. Supplements are just that—supplements. They are intended to add nutritional benefit to your diet, not to replace all healthy habits and nutritionally dense foods.
Supplements should not be taken in exchange for nutritious foods, adequate exercise, and rest.
Why Do People Take Multivitamins?
People take a multivitamin supplement for a variety of reasons, but one of the top reasons is lack of energy. Do you feel a loss of energy around 3 p.m.? Or maybe you wake up tired and gulp down your coffee as you run out the door, late for that morning meeting?
This scenario is a common issue for many Americans. Adequate rest is essential to health and often overlooked in our busy lives. Taking a women’s multivitamin could be a missing link in your energy levels.
Other reasons people take multivitamins are:
- To improve their overall health, or to maintain their current level of health
- To promote overall healthy bones, and prevent conditions like osteoporosis
- To supplement the diet with vitamins and minerals, especially ones that might be difficult to fulfill in your daily dietary requirements
- To prevent problems of health, specifically heart disease—the number one killer in the United States
- To boost immunity and prevent illnesses like common colds and the flu
- To improve the overall health of joints, and to prevent the onset of arthritis
- To improve overall energy throughout the day
- To improve the health of skin, and to prevent dry skin
- To help achieve weight loss goals or to build muscle mass
When looking for a quality supplement, there are so many to choose from. Do some research and find out what areas you need to address: gaps in nutrition, exercise, and/or rest.
[i] https://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/2015/default.asp Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion