As part of our commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the discovery of vitamins, we are providing several tips on proper vitamin intake.
Did you know age matters when it comes to vitamins? All vitamins are essential – meaning our bodies can’t make them, so they must be obtained from the diet. Throughout life, we all need the right mix of the 13 essential vitamins, but some are more important than others when it comes to different life stages.
“With a century of vitamin knowledge upon us, it’s a good reminder to stay up to date on the latest vitamin recommendations,” says Elizabeth Somer, registered dietitian and author of Eat Your Way to Sexy. “New vitamin research findings are continuously being uncovered around the needs of men and women during unique times in their lives.”
A quick stroll through life’s stages reveals:
20s: Folic acid is important for women in their 20s – a prime childbearing age – because this B vitamin is essential in preventing birth defects like spina bifida in infants. Women need at least 400mcg per day, but often don’t get enough. By the time a pregnancy test comes back positive and women ponder taking a supplement, it could be too late.
30s: Antioxidant vitamins, including C and E, are important for men and women in their 30s because these vitamins help protect against the development of cataracts and macular degeneration. Adults with high levels of these antioxidants are at a low risk of vision loss later in life.
40s and beyond: Vitamins D and B12 are important in the 40s and well after. As we get older, we are less efficient at making vitamin D and we may be susceptible to drops in the levels of vitamin absorption. Vitamin B12 deficiencies are typically due to insufficient diet and absorption challenges.
For more information about the 100th anniversary of vitamins, visit: http://www.100yearsofvitamins.com/