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Vitamins for Vitality

by Anna Mischke | Sep 21, 2017

Driver News 092117_2With the seasons shifting and a particularly busy time of year coming, maintaining your health is a top priority. As flu viruses and colds make their rounds, having a strong immune system will help combat the illnesses attempting to wear you down. When you’re in the midst of a demanding season and time won’t stop for a sore throat or runny nose, you’re going to want to avoid getting sick by any means possible. Of course a healthy diet, adequate sleep, and exercise are the best ways to combating sickness- but living in the real world, we know getting all three isn’t necessarily easy. This is when you can turn to vitamins to help boost your immunity, lend extra energy, and protect yourself from potential fevers, coughs, and aches.

The easiest way to ensure you are getting the adequate amount of vitamins throughout your day is through the form of a supplement. The best, most natural way of getting the vitamins the body needs for healthy functioning is adding foods to your diet that help nourish the body and taste delicious. Start by adding a multi-vitamin to your daily routine and try your hand in the kitchen: you may be skipping the cough syrup this year!

Vitamin C

According to Harvard University, more than 2 million sailors died of scurvy due to lack of vitamin C. While it’s unlikely you’ll fall prone to the grasp of scurvy in this modern age, vitamin C helps in the production of tendons, ligaments, cartilage, and protein in your bones while protecting you from free radical damage. Foods rich with vitamin C are citrus such as oranges and grapefruit along with broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and kale.

Find a favorite vitamin C-rich recipe here.

Zinc

The common cold is pesky- and you have a much better chance of fighting it off with zinc in your diet. In small amounts, zinc helps with hormone production, growth, and digestion. It is also an anti-inflammatory that can help aid chronic diseases such as heart disease and cancer. Good sources of zinc are spinach, pomegranates, lean grass-fed beef, shrimp, chickpeas/garbanzo beans, and cashews.

Find a favorite Zinc-rich recipe here.

Vitamin E

This fat-soluble antioxidant protects cell membranes and may even prevent LDL cholesterol from forming into plaque on arteries. Vitamin E may also aid in eye disorders like cataracts. Sunflower seeds, tomatoes, tofu, almonds, avocado, and salmon are strong sources of Vitamin E.

Find a favorite vitamin E-rich recipe here.

Vitamin B

The group of 11 B-complex vitamins include riboflavin, biotin, and folate as well as B-6 and B-12; vital in helping the body metabolize protein, fat, and carbohydrates. B vitamins help with the production and repair of DNA and others help with mind-related matters such as mood and migraines. You can find the various types of vitamin B in fortified whole-grain cereals, dark leafy greens, ham, chicken, eggs, peanuts, potatoes, pasta, shellfish, and bananas.

Find a favorite vitamin B-rich recipe here.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D, usually associated to the sun, helps the body absorb calcium and works toward supporting the immune, muscle, and nerve systems. It can also help aid against depression and cystic fibrosis. Vitamin D can be absorbed through the skin, from food, and from supplements. Since staying in the sun for too long can lead to dangerous skin cancer and it can be difficult to come by in the winter months, eating vitamin D rich foods such as egg yolks, fish like sardines and canned tuna, mushrooms and some fortified cereals can be a great source of this important vitamin.

Find a favorite vitamin- D rich recipe here.

Omega-3 Vitamins

Commonly known as Fish Oil, omega-3s are important in maintaining a healthy heart and strengthening brain productivity. Omega-3s aren’t necessarily easy to come by in natural foods (such as fish and walnuts), but the vitamin helps reduce inflammation, lowers triglyceride levels, and improves gastrointestinal functionality. Omega-3s can be found in Mackerel, Herring, Tuna, Sardines, Anchovies, and flaxseeds.

Find a favorite Omega-3-rich recipe here.

Vitamin A

Vitamin A helps the body regulate its cells and is a powerful antioxidant. Overall health is effected by this vitamin as it helps reduce inflammation, builds stronger bones, and supports immunity by helping the body produce white blood cells to fight away illness and infections. Add vitamin A in your diet by eating carrots, cabbage, goat cheese, hard-boiled eggs, sweet potatoes, cod liver oil, and liver (lamb/beef/goose).

Find a favorite vitamin A-rich recipe here.

As always, make sure to speak with your doctor if you are on any other medications before adding any new supplements or vitamins to your diet. Every individual reacts differently to different substances, natural or not.

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