Multivitamin and mineral tablets contain a complex of micronutrients.
Vitamins and minerals are substances that are necessary in very small quantities to ensure the proper functioning of the body and prevent diseases. Adequate production of these substances is also necessary for optimal athletic performance. A lack of vitamins and minerals can lead to a lack of energy and sensitivity to the slightest infections or diseases. The table describes the functions (related to physical activity) and the best food sources of 12 essential vitamins and minerals, as well as the daily norms of their consumption. Vitamin-mineral supplements can help eliminate some deficiencies in the diet and improve the nutritional status, but there is no evidence that high doses increase physical performance.
Many people could probably benefit from taking vitamins and minerals, but simply swallowing pills will not eliminate the harmful health effects of a poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle. First of all, you need to pay attention to your diet and engage in regular physical activity. If you exercise intensively several times a week, your needs for many vitamins and minerals are most likely higher than the RDN (recommended daily value), and supplements can help you better meet your needs. A deficiency of any vitamin or mineral substance adversely affects health, as well as performance.
What is an RDN?
The recommended daily values (RDA, or RDA) indicated on the labels of food and supplements are an approximate estimate of a person’s nutritional needs. They were developed by the EU to meet the nutritional needs of the majority of the population. The norms are calculated in such a way as to prevent the symptoms of food deficiency, create small reserves of nutrients, and also eliminate the difference in needs between individuals. They are not an end in themselves; they only help to understand whether you are getting enough nutrients.
In general, taking vitamin and mineral supplements is harmless, but in order to protect against overdose, the UK Food Standards Agency has established safe consumption standards. In particular, it is warned that you can not take chromium pi-calinate more than 10 mg per day. Taking more than 1 g of vitamin C per day can lead to an upset stomach, and more than 17 mg per day of iron causes constipation. Taking more than 10 mg of vitamin B6 for a long period of time can result in numbness of the extremities and persistent tingling in them. During pregnancy, high doses of vitamin A should be avoided, as it can lead to birth defects of the fetus. High doses of vitamin D can cause an increase in blood pressure. Thus, make it a rule never to take vitamins A and D in doses 10 times higher than the RDA, and never to take any mineral substance higher than the doses indicated in the RDA. Check the standards indicated on the labels and do not exceed the upper safe aisles shown in the table below.
Do you have a deficiency of vitamins and minerals?
About 12 million people in the UK take vitamins and mineral supplements to prevent or reduce the symptoms of diseases. A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association concluded that most people
they do not receive enough vitamins from the diet to adequately protect against diseases such as cancer and cardiovascular diseases. Researchers from the Harvard Medical School say that most people could benefit from taking multivitamins, especially if:
- You are on a diet and eat less than 1,500 calories a day. Reducing food intake increases the likelihood of not receiving certain nutrients.
- You eat mainly processed foods or fast food products. These foods are not only rich in saturated fats, sugar and salt, but also poor in vitamins.
- You regularly skip meals. This means that you are most likely consuming high-calorie snacks that are low in vitamins and minerals.
- You don’t eat the recommended 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day. These products are rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
- You have a food intolerance or food allergy. This can make it more difficult to get some of the necessary nutrients.
- You are a vegetarian. It is more difficult (although possible) to get enough vitamin B12, calcium and iron from a plant-based diet.