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To Supplement, or Not To Supplement? For Many Americans, That is the Question…

Should you take a daily multivitamin?

Critics of the natural health industry say, “No.” They say you get all the nutrients you need from your diet and that fortified foods fill in any nutritional gaps you might have.

But this kind of propaganda is really just a subtle attack on the natural health industry.

They say your body doesn’t easily absorb supplements. Then they say there isn’t any proof that getting enough of the right kinds of vitamins and minerals actually protects you from disease.

They’ll say just about anything, and when direct attacks against your right to access natural health solutions fail, the FDA and the powerful lobbies that influence them turn to media and marketing.

The FDA and the pharmaceutical industry say you should stop taking supplements…

But is there any merit to their claims?

Debunking the Supplement Myth

The first thing critics of the natural health industry say is “You can get all the nutrition you need from your diet.

This can be true, but for most people it’s not.

How many people do you know who eat five servings of vegetables each day? Or who dine on fish twice a week? How many do you know that regularly get a broad cross section of wholesome, natural foods?

Not many, I’ll bet. According to the CDC, 67 percent of Americans eat just two servings of vegetables a day … or less.

A major hurdle to healthy eating for most people is the quality of our overall food supply.

Even if you’re eating natural, unprocessed foods, poor farming practices have forced the level of nutritional density in our crops to decline. This trend has been well-documented… and it’s been going on for decades.

Food Gaps

The FDA and the pharmaceutical industry tell us that fortified foods cover all the most important nutritional gaps in our everyday diets.

And fortified foods can help prevent common deficiencies like too little iron or too little folate, but many foods are over-fortified with certain vitamins and minerals.

Multivitamins provide a better balance of nutrients in health proportions to help avoid both deficiencies and excesses. And while critics are correct that some supplements aren’t readily absorbed by your body… there are a plethora of high-quality supplements on the market that can be.

The truly worrying thing is that there are real, critical nutrient deficiencies that are undermining the general health in the U.S.

Three Deficiencies You Can Avoid With Supplements

Omega-3 Fatty Acids: According to some studies, 90 percent of adults in America don’t get enough omega-3 fatty acids.

Too little omega-3s can put you at higher risk of a number of diseases and can make existing diseases worse. Omega-3 deficiencies can also cause learning disabilities and depression.

The ideal way to get more omega-3 fatty acids is to eat more fish. Salmon and other cold-water, fatty fish are best. If you find working fish into your menu regularly isn’t something you enjoy, then the best choice for you is to supplement. Choose a high quality fish oil supplement, or take a spoonful of cod liver oil daily and boost your vitamin D at the same time.

Speaking of vitamin D…

Vitamin D: Two out of every five adults in the U.S. is deficient in vitamin D. Medical researchers have linked vitamin D deficiency with higher rates of heart disease, a higher incidence of fatal cardiac events, and with a greater risk of cancer.

Vitamin D deficiency also correlates with obesity, high blood pressure, and generally poor health.

You can make sure you’re getting enough Vitamin D by getting more sun—at least ten minutes a day without sunscreen. You can also supplement with cod liver oil or with a multivitamin that contains vitamin D3.

Magnesium: According to some experts, nearly 80 percent of Americans don’t get enough magnesium. A magnesium deficiency can trigger constipation, headaches, cramps, and other muscle issues. A prolonged magnesium deficiency increases your risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and more.

To stave off magnesium deficiency, take a multivitamin that contains at least 150 mg of the mineral. You’ll get some magnesium from your food, and your multivitamin will round out the rest.

Nutritional deficiencies among Americans are a growing issue. Heart disease and cancer are a big enough threat to your health on their own. Protect yourself from even higher risks by taking sensible supplements that support your body’s nutritional needs.

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