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What Are The Most Important Nutritional Supplements I Can Take?

What Are The Most Important Nutritional Supplements I Can Take?
0 23 February 2016

Nutritional Supplements

Your nutritional needs change as you get older. That is why many people who are over the age of 40 are deficient in one or more nutrients. Fortunately, most people can make up for certain nutritional deficiencies by taking supplements. Below is a list of some of the most important supplements you can take if you are over the age of 40:

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is not a vitamin at all, but is actually a hormone derived from cholesterol!  It does allow your body to absorb calcium from the dietary tract in order to help strengthen your bones, but it also protects against heart disease, all types of cancers, and dementia!  

There are foods that contain vitamin D, such as pink salmon and cod liver oil. However, the vitamin D from foods is often poorly absorbed. The sun is a natural source of vitamin D, but most people do not spend enough time in the sun to get the vitamin D that they need. That is why taking a supplement can be beneficial.

The best way to know if you have enough vitamin D in your body is to have your serum level tested.  This is a readily available blood test, and adequately replacing vitamin D is an easy way to lower your risk of many of the diseases of aging.

Fish Oil

Fish oil is filled with omega 3 fatty acids. Studies have shown that omega 3 fatty acids can help lower your blood pressure and calm inflammation not only within your arteries, but also throughout your body. Your risk of developing high blood pressure increases as you get older because the arteries become stiffer. High blood pressure is a dangerous condition because it can put you at risk for developing a stroke or heart attack.

Omega 3 fatty acids can also lower cholesterol. Your risk of developing abnormal cholesterol increases as you get older. Unbalanced cholesterol is also a risk factor for heart disease. Omega 3 fatty acids can also improve brain health and protect against Alzheimer’s disease.

Probiotics

Probiotics are live bacteria that are good for your health. Studies have shown that the health of your gut bacteria begins to significantly decrease after 40, worsening even more quickly with age.

There have been a number of studies done to show that an unhealthy balance of bacteria can play a role in many illnesses including obesity, diabetes, allergies and autoimmune diseases. It can also play a role in emotional problems, such as depression. Because gut bacteria health decreases as a person gets older, it can put a person at risk for those problems. Fortunately, probiotics can help improve immune system functioning and overall health.

Protein

Protein is essential to building and repair of your body.  As you get older, you often have to focus more carefully on taking in enough protein, because muscle mass naturally declines with age at the rate of somewhere between .5 and 2% per year.  You can slow or stop the natural loss of muscle with adequate protein consumption.  Protein is not only necessary for building muscle and bone mass, but also for wound healing.  It can also promote weight loss. In patients who followed a protein-adequate diet compared to subjects who followed a typical American diet, over a 6-month period of time people who followed a protein-adequate diet lost 4.5 pounds more than the other group. 

So, as you work this year to get healthier, don’t forget about making these easy additions to your supplement program!

Find all of these supplements and more at the Cenegenics Store.

Posted in Dr. McCallen's Blog, Health & Nutrition by Cenegenics Denver