Many experts around the world say that the best way to ensure that you’re getting all the vitamins your body needs to function properly is to eat a healthy and balanced diet. Did you know that one of the main reasons why many people suffer from deficiencies is that they don’t eat the way they should? Yes, and this means that even if you eat a healthy and balanced diet, the way your food is stored, a lack of freshness and processing can greatly affect the vitamins your body is able to absorb. But, don’t worry, because we’re here to help you! The list below describes how certain vitamins are essential to your health, some symptoms you may recognize if you’re suffering from a deficiency and the foods you should eat to get your vitamin levels back on track. There are supplements you can take, but usually the best source is the all-natural way through food. And, this is extremely important for you to remember – you can’t diagnose a vitamin deficiency on your own, so if you recognize any of these symptoms, make an appointment with your doctor. Under your doctor’s guidance and supervision, you can get a deficiency under control in a way that works for you and any of your pre-existing conditions.
- Vitamin B12
Here’s what you need to know – first, you should know that vitamin B12 plays a vital role because it aids the production of DNA and helps make new neurotransmitters in the brain. These are the most common symptoms: numbness in the hands, feet or legs; difficulty with walking and balance; anemia; fatigue; weakness; a swollen tongue; memory loss; paranoia and hallucinations. The experts also say that there’s an increase in this deficiency because more people are going vegan and undergoing weight-loss surgery. B12 is commonly found in animal sources, so if you have a deficiency, you should consume more meat, poultry, fish and milk products. If you’re vegan, Everyday Health suggests nondairy milk, meat substitutes and breakfast cereals to help increase your intake.
Magnesium helps detoxify your body of environmental toxins and prevent migraines and cardiovascular diseases. A recent study has discovered that magnesium can even reduce the risk of developing diabetes for those who are high risk. But despite its incredible benefits to our bodies, more than 80 percent of us have a magnesium deficiency. These are the most common symptoms of a magnesium deficiency: decrease in appetite, nausea and vomiting, fatigue and weakness. A severe deficiency can cause numbness, muscle cramps, seizures, abnormal heart rhythms, changes in personality and low levels of potassium or calcium. But, don’t worry, and to get your magnesium levels back on track, you don’t need to resort to supplements. Instead it’s important to consume dark-green leafy vegetables like seaweed, spinach, or Swiss chard. Some kinds of beans, nuts, and seeds — like pumpkin, sunflower and sesame seeds — are also great sources of magnesium, as are avocados.
- Vitamin D
According to the experts, the best way to get vitamin D is to let it soak into your skin from the sun, but the benefits of this vitamin are much deeper than that. Vitamin D is key to bone health, and without it, Everyday Health says it can actually cause osteoporosis. These are the most common symptoms of a vitamin D deficiency: fatigue and muscle aches or weakness, being over the age of 50, obesity, feeling blue, head sweating and poor immune function. And, to get the vitamin D you need, you should get out into the sun. You need only enough sunlight to make your skin one shade darker; any more than that is harmful to your body and actually won’t help you produce more vitamin D. Everyday Health says you can also reach for fortified milk and yogurt daily, as well as fatty fish.
First, you should know that iron is very important to your health because it helps your body make the red blood cells it needs. When your iron levels are too low, your body can’t carry enough oxygen, which can cause serious problems. These are the most common symptoms of low iron: fatigue, pale skin and dull, thin, sparse hair. And, if you need a boost of iron, opt for some iron-filled foods like beef, oysters, spinach, lentils and beans — such as white beans, chickpeas and kidney beans.
You suffer from calcium deficiency? Well, you should drink more milk! The experts say that calcium is crucial for strong bone health. But it also controls muscle and nerve function. These are the most common symptoms of a calcium deficiency: fatigue, muscle cramps, abnormal heart rhythms and a poor appetite. You should fight low calcium levels by eating raw whole foods that maximize natural minerals, such as leafy greens. Milk, the pith of citrus fruits, carob and wheat grass are also great sources of calcium.
And, be very careful – don’t start a calcium supplement without speaking to your doctor first. Calcium levels are closely tied to vitamin D, K2 and magnesium, and too much could increase your risk for heart attack or stroke. So a proper regimen to maintain all these vitamin levels should be discussed with your doctor.
Do you know what’s folate? Folate, or also known as folic acid, is an extremely important vitamin for pregnant women and any women of childbearing age. Folate keeps cells and red blood cells in check, and a decrease in folate can cause neural tube defects in unborn children.The symptoms of a folate deficiency include: fatigue, gray hair, ulcers in your mouth, poor growth and tongue swelling. The best way to fight a folate deficiency (pregnant women and women of childbearing age) is to take a supplement. You can also get folate from fortified cereals, beans, lentils, leafy greens and oranges.
- Vitamin E
First, you should know that Vitamin E is essential for maintaining brain health, protecting against aging and supporting normal cholesterol levels. And, if you have a vitamin E deficiency, you might recognize the following symptoms: muscle weakness, loss of muscle mass, abnormal eye movements, vision problems and unsteady walking.
Note: you can combat a vitamin E deficiency by taking a natural supplement that is marked as the “d-” form (for example, d-alpha-tocopherol or d-beta-tocopherol). The best source of vitamin E is in your food, though, so opt for nuts — like hazelnuts, almonds, walnuts, and pecans — seeds, olive oil, legumes and green vegetables. Thanks for reading and don’t forget to share!