Friday, July 1, 2011

Multivitamins: Do You Really Need To Take Them?

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As a kid I remember being told to take my Flintstones vitamins every morning after I ate breakfast.  My mom would say that I would grow up to be healthy and strong if I did. But as I got older I questioned the advice that my mom used to give me about those chew-able fruit-flavored supplements. Do you really need to take multivitamins?

Well to answer that question, it’s actually yes and no.

For those of you out there who actually follow the recommended food guide pyramid the answer is no. If you are eating a wide range of foods in moderation then you are already receiving the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of specific vitamins and minerals.

Why take a daily multivitamin when you are already receiving the vitamins and minerals needed? As for the majority of Americans, the answer of whether or not you should consume a daily multivitamin is yes.

According to the most recent Healthy Eating Index survey conducted by the USDA, most Americans do not eat a healthy balanced diet on a daily basis. The typical American diet does not include all of the vitamins and minerals that are needed to stay healthy.

Taking a daily supplement is like swallowing a nutritional insurance policy. The majority of the U.S. population usually grabs a hamburger and soda every week at In-n-Out and rarely picks up in vegetables from the grocery store. And when we do go shopping for a snack, wandering eyes look for the quick and easy-to-prepare processed foods in the vibrantly colored packages. And although we do at times try our best to stay healthy, a pill filled with everything that you would need for the entire day can be taken after a meal. So why not reinsure your health?

Being deficient in vitamins by eating poorly and not taking a multivitamin can lead to major illnesses like cancer, heart disease, kidney and liver disease, osteoporosis, stroke and diabetes. People who are pregnant, over the age of 50, on special diets, on weight-loss regimens, smokers, anyone who drinks an abundance of alcohol and people with poor appetite are really recommended to take a multivitamin because of the lack of vitamins that they are more likely to receive.

So when eating right and exercising just doesn’t give you a full reassurance in your health or you know you may not be as healthy as you would like to be, taking a multivitamin supplement could be a great choice in becoming a little bit healthier.

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