Vitamin pills can be really handy for filling in or topping up those nutritional gaps in your lifestyle, acting as a safeguard making sure you get what your body needs to keep healthy.
However, there’s nothing quite like the real thing, so if you think you can happily just pop a pill everyday you might be just missing the point and need to ask yourself, is it time to add more vitamin rich foods to your diet?
Why Do We Need Vitamins?
Your body needs vitamins to keep everything working properly. Since your body can’t make some of them, it’s very important to consume them through your diet.
According to authorities you need a multitude of different vitamins daily to keep your body functioning at optimum health (source)
Vitamins are responsible for helping many processes in your body like growth, boosting your immune system and maintaining complete body health.
The majority of vitamins also have powerful antioxidant properties that fend of those free radicals we always hear so much about.
Each vitamin plays a different role, offering you a healthy helping hand.
From the likes of vitamin A which is very beneficial for healthy vision, skin and hair down to the lesser known (but equally as important) vitamin K, which supports your bones and helps with blood clotting.
This is why it’s so important to include them all in your life.
Here are a few just to give you even more reason (and less excuses) to include them in your diet:
This must be one of the hardest vitamins to get, due to the lowest number of foods it can be found in. It’s known as the sunny vitamin, because that’s the number one way our body gets this vitamin – from the sun.
However, that doesn’t mean you can’t find it in foods. The most prolific food containing vitamin D is beef liver or fish, such as salmon or mackerel.
Vitamin D plays an essential role in bone health as it helps the body get the most out of calcium.
If you have a deficiency in vitamin B6, you will normally experience symptoms such as lack of energy or bad skin.
Vitamin B6 is important for brain health and memory and also regulating blood sugar levels in the body.
Top foods for vitamin B6 include meats such as chicken and pork and when it comes to veggies think super greens like spinach or green peas.
Folic Acid (Vitamin B9)
Folate is particularly important for generating new cells in the body. For this reason most people will know it as an essential nutrient for women in early stages of pregnancy.
It also joins forces with another member of the vitamin B complex, B12 and helps to make red blood cells. That’s why if you have a poor diet you could be at risk from anaemia (low blood count).
Leafy super greens are best for a dense, vitamin rich boost of folate such as spinach, broccoli or legumes like lentils and beans and even breakfast cereals contain fortified folic acid these days too.
Supplements vs Real Foods
So why can’t I just pop a pill and get everything I need in one shot? If only things were that simple.
When you take a supplement, yes you are getting a certain amount of dietary vitamins that your body needs, but what about all the other goodness you get from real foods?
When you eat an orange for example, you not only get a jam packed serving of vitamin C, but you also get many other nutrients such as the B vitamins and folic acid.
You are also getting the fill you up fiber and carbs to give you energy.
Let’s face it, you’ve got to eat to live, you can’t sustain a life on consuming pills now can you?
All these things you wouldn’t get by taking a vitamin C tablet alone.
How to Get Those Nutrients into Your Daily Life
Try and incorporate as many colors on your plate as you can, think brightly colored fruits and vegetables.
The more vibrant mix of colors the more kinds of nutrients you will find (and it looks good too). Just be creative, being healthy doesn’t have to mean being boring.
Take Little Steps
If your diet isn’t great to start with, yes you should overhaul it and pretty sharpish, but I hear what your saying, old habits are very difficult to break.
Therefore the best approach is to make little changes step by step. Become aware of what you are eating and look for healthy nutrient rich alternatives and by trying to make small changes you are more likely to stick with it and your body will thank you in the long run.
Reap the Rewards of Vitamin Rich Foods
If you follow a well balanced and healthy meal plan, chances are you should feel more energetic, mentally alert and as they are usually low in calories you could also lose a few pounds in the mix too.
So should you find time to add vitamin rich foods into your diet? I think it’s pretty safe to say they yes, considering they could provide so many potential benefits towards improving your health and wellbeing.
And as far as health is concerned, I think everyone should make time for that.