Why You Need Nutrition
By Karen Myers
Copyright © 2006 All Rights Reserved
Nutrition supplements are an important part of healthy
living in today's fast paced world. Even if you are eating a
balanced diet, here's why you may need nutritional
supplementation, and why in some cases, you might be overdoing
A Few Quick Nutrition
Did you know that 98% of the population are not getting
the nutrients their bodies need on a daily basis? You may
be eating plenty of food, but not eating the right foods that
give your body the nutrients you need, combined with physical
exercise, to be healthy.
Pregnancy, illness, injury, surgery or emotional upsets
(read stress), are just a few of the many factors that can
change our body's nutrition requirements.
It's important to note that a single nutrient deficiency
can endanger the whole body. For example, lack of almost
any of the B complex vitamins leads to the mishandling of blood
sugar in the body. Mental symptoms of Vitamin B
deficiencies are many, and are probably the first signs to
Equally important, while you do need enough
nutrients, too much of some nutrients can also cause
problems. Example: it is inadvisable to take a supplement
of any single one of the B complex vitamins on their own. They
all interact in the body, and a sudden excess of one can create
a greater need for the others, therefore creating a
In nature, most of the commonly used foods which contain one
B vitamin, contain them all... (just one more reason we
believe the best liquid vitamins come from all-natural whole
Also, to be effective, nutrition supplements need to be
synergistically balanced. Example: a specific amount of
vitamin B6 is required for proper absorption of vitamin B12. If
you don't have the correct combination, you could end up with a
serious neurological disorder. Did you know that inorganic iron
can completely destroy the beneficial effects of vitamin E?
Care must be taken in formulating a nutritional supplement.
Unfortunately, many manufacturers don't realize the danger
certain combinations can create.
What Is A Dietary
Congress defined the term "dietary supplement" in the
Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA) of 1994.
A dietary supplement is a product taken by mouth that
contains a "dietary ingredient" intended to supplement the
The "dietary ingredients" in these products may include:
vitamins, minerals, herbs or other botanicals, amino acids, and
substances such as enzymes, organ tissues, glandulars, and
metabolites. Dietary supplements can also be extracts or
concentrates, and may be found in many forms such as tablets,
capsules, softgels, gelcaps, liquids, or powders. They can also
be in other forms, such as a bar, but if they are, information
on their label must not represent the product as a conventional
food or a sole item of a meal or diet.
Whatever their form may be, DSHEA places dietary
supplements in a special category under the general
umbrella of "foods," not drugs, and requires
that every supplement be labeled a dietary supplement.
General Uses for Dietary
Thousands of scientific studies have been published proving
that nutritional supplements can have a dramatic impact on your
According to the USA Government website by NIH, some uses of
dietary supplements have become part of conventional medicine
(see this USA Government site for
And some supplements are considered to be complementary and
alternative medicine (CAM) -- either the supplement itself or
one or more of its uses. An example of a CAM supplement
would be an herbal formula that claims to relieve arthritis
pain, but has not been proven to do so through scientific
studies. Another example of a CAM use of a supplement would be
taking 1,000 milligrams of vitamin C per day to prevent or
treat a cold, as the use of large amounts of vitamin C for
these purposes has not been proven.
Tips for Using
It's always important to check with your doctor or
healthcare provider before using a supplement, particularly for
certain population groups. Examples... if you;
While vitamin and mineral supplements are widely used and
generally considered safe for children, you may wish to check
with your doctor or pharmacist before giving these or any other
dietary supplements to your child.
- are pregnant
- nursing a baby
- have a chronic medical condition
- are taking medications, and/or
- facing surgery.
Also, Dietary Guidelines for Americans is
published jointly every 5 years by the Department of Health
and Human Services (HHS) and the Department of Agriculture
(USDA). The Guidelines provide authoritative advice for
people two years and older about how good dietary habits can