Eating for Energy: Vitamins and Minerals

Vitamins and minerals are essential nutrients for keeping your body healthy. It’s common feel tired during the day, which may be a result of not getting enough vitamins and minerals. Eating a balanced diet filled with fruits, vegetables, whole grains, dairy, and protein ensures that your body gets a variety of these nutrients to work at its best.

It’s often believed that taking a multivitamin is the best way to get essential nutrients. Taking a multivitamin is a good way to get vitamins and minerals, but it shouldn’t be the only way. Unless someone has a vitamin or mineral deficiency, the best way to get these nutrients is through whole foods. 

The main food groups that you should be eating in your diet are fruits, vegetables, whole grains, dairy, protein. These whole foods have the greatest amount of nutrients as long as you are consuming the recommended portions. It’s also easier for your body to absorb these nutrients through whole foods rather than through a multivitamin. 

Here are a few vitamins and minerals that you should be consuming daily to function at your best and improve energy levels:

Vitamins

B Vitamins increases energy: Find it in meat, poultry, fish, fortified and whole grains, mushrooms, potatoes, avocados, bananas, eggs, broccoli, spinach\

Vitamin C can act as an antioxidant: Find it in citrus fruit, bell peppers, spinach, strawberries, tomatoes, Brussels sprouts

Vitamin A helps with vision: Find it in beef, eggs, shrimp, fish, sweet potatoes, carrots, mangoes

Vitamin D keeps bones strong: Find it in fortified milk and cereals

Vitamin E can act as an antioxidant: Find it in vegetable oils, leafy green vegetables, nuts

Vitamin K assists in bone formation: Find it in cabbage, eggs, broccoli, kale

 

Minerals

Calcium helps build strong bones: Find it in yogurt, cheese, milk, salmon, spinach

Magnesium maintains nerve and muscle function: Find it in spinach, broccoli, whole-wheat bread

Potassium maintains a proper water balance in the body: Find it in meat, milk, bananas, vegetables, grains

Sodium maintains fluid balance: Find it in salt, vegetables

Fluoride reduces tooth decay: Find it in fish, teas, tap water

Iodine maintains thyroid hormone balance: Find it in iodized salt, seafood

Iron helps flow oxygen through the body: Find it in red meat, poultry, eggs, fruits, green vegetables

Zinc supports the immune system: Find it in meat, shellfish, whole grains

 

It is important that you make sure you are eating your vitamins and minerals every day through whole foods. As long as you fit in the recommended amounts of each food group daily, you should get most of the vitamins and minerals you need. If you are worried about a deficiency, please talk to your doctor. They can give you more information about which vitamins and minerals your diet should focus on, or which supplements to take to reach the recommended daily value. 

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