To be healthy means to maintain an optimal balance of all the functions in your body. Moreover, staying in good physical shape is as important as taking care of your mental health. To achieve overall good health and well-being you should keep a good balance between the two. The foundation of a healthy mind is a healthy body. The foundation of optimal physical health is enough necessary nutrients taken on a daily basis. Given the fact that it is quite a challenge to keep track of the sufficient daily nutrients’ intake by diligently choosing meals, our bodies often suffer nutrient deficiency. Moreover, a hectic lifestyle and poor diet affect the number of essential nutrients taken on a daily basis. Eating good food is the best way to get the right balance of vitamins and minerals.
In the short term supplements may help bring you back to balance. The easiest way to make sure you are taking enough of every essential nutrient is to take natural supplements. However, before deciding to include any supplements to your daily diet, you should consult your doctor or nutritionist. They will suggest which supplements you may be lacking and how much you should take. If you aren’t very familiar with what are some essential supplements, here’s a list of 5 supplements that can help you boost your overall health.
Health-Boosting Natural Supplements
Vitamins are very important for our overall health because each of them has a certain role. Since many people don’t eat a variety of foods, especially fruits, vegetables, and nuts and seeds, they lack some vitamins. If you also have a vitamin deficiency or don’t feel the best, you should consider taking them as supplements. However, you should always consult your doctor, so they can suggest what works best for you.
While taking separate vitamins is good due to the higher concentration of a certain vitamin, taking quality multivitamins is the best option for ensuring good overall health. Of all the vitamins, people mostly need vitamin D because the number of food sources is limited. This vitamin is an essential nutrient because it strengthens bones and teeth and improves their health (1). It’s also important for a strong immune system (2).
It seems that vitamins and minerals go hand in hand. Not only that’s true but there’s also a good reason for that. You see, many vitamins are co enzymes and the minerals are enzyme activators. That means the vitamins can’t work without minerals. That’s why you need to consume minerals along with vitamins.
Of all the minerals, the most important are calcium and magnesium. Calcium is important for bone and teeth health and strength (3) It’s also responsible for fast nerve transmission (4), healthy muscle contractions (5), and proper blood clotting (6). Since magnesium helps increase the absorption of calcium, they usually go together. This mineral is important for energy production and muscle relaxation, and when combined with the calcium they act together (7).
Probiotics are the bacteria you need for a healthy gut. They are needed for supporting vital functions, such as the proper function of the immune system, digestive system, and nutrient absorption. We are usually given these supplements when we consume antibiotics because they kill the good bacteria in our intestines, thus creating an imbalance in the gut. It’s because they help restore the balance and reverse the damage caused by antibiotics and the other unhealthy habits we have (8).
However, not all probiotics are the same so you need to know which ones to choose. In order to choose the right probiotics, you should look for those made with soil-based organisms. They can survive longer, thus repopulating the gut and supporting its healing. Also, you should look for a formula with 25 – 50 billion probiotics and with at least 5 different probiotic strains. It would be great if you find probiotics that include prebiotics because they feed the good bacteria, thus supporting their continuous growth.
4. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
When we hear omega-3, we immediately think of fish. Moreover, fish is the greatest source of these essential acids. However, most people don’t consume enough fish as much as it’s suggested (3 to 5 times a week), so they may be deficient in Omega-3 fatty acids. And, that’s such a bummer because omega-3 fatty acids have numerous health benefits. Namely, they help reduce inflammation, help with mood disorders (including depression), can be effective in treating metabolic syndrome, and so on (9).
Omega-3 deficiency leads to changes in cell membranes and increased inflammation, pain, and swelling. This is a result of the reduced release of prostaglandin compounds that control these processes (10). Although you can consume this nutrient from fish, nuts, and seeds, you don’t eat them in big enough quantities. Hence, you can’t replenish their amount. That’s why you should consider taking omega-3 supplements.
The last supplement on our list is antioxidants. These are substances that fight free radicals – the molecules or atoms which can damage your nerves and cells, thus causing certain health conditions and diseases. By fighting the free radicals, antioxidants prevent their damage, in that way supporting some biological processes. For instance, antioxidants protect from chronic conditions, such as heart disease, and delay aging (11). Although there are some vitamins, such as C and E, that act similarly and which you can consume regularly, it might not be enough. That’s why taking antioxidants as supplements is the best option.