By Lauren Jacobsen
If you’ve ever strolled down the wellness aisle, surveyed the overwhelming choices, and abandoned your better-health mission with dismay — we understand, and we decided enough was enough! So we created our own mission: to scope out the best in vitamins, minerals, and nutrients, so that you can be healthier without the headache! Follow this customized guide and find the supplements that are right for you.
When you’re in your twenties, you are getting to know yourself, building your career, and probably feeling that you’re far too busy to worry about your health. But practising good habits and taking some essential nutrients are key to your future.
An iron deficiency can result in loss of endurance, low energy, reduced recovery, muscle weakness, and even anemia, so it’s important to make sure you’re getting your daily dose. Red blood cells need iron to carry oxygen throughout the body, and iron is also involved in producing muscle energy, regulating the body’s temperature and assisting with cell growth. Women have a greater need for iron, particularly during their reproductive years, if they are pregnant, or exercise regularly since iron stores can be depleted through blood, sweat, or red blood cell production. Aim for 18 mg a day. A supplement, red meat, whole grains, lentils, and beans are great go-tos.
This marvelous mineral helps build and maintain your bones, and is required for proper muscle contraction. It’s important to take it early on because women begin to lose bone density in their twenties, which can increase your risk of osteoporosis. Calcium can also reduce the symptoms of PMS. Try a daily supplement, or get your fill from dairy products, like non-fat Greek yogurt, or dark green vegetables, and aim for 1,000 mg per day.
Babies might be the last thing on your mind, but consider taking folic acid anyway. This essential nutrient is needed for proper fetal development, and should be taken in advance of pregnancy. Folic acid can help to prevent central nervous system birth defects and reduce your risk of premature birth. Studies also show that taking folic acid before conception and during the first trimester may reduce the risk of brain and spine or spinal cord defects by more than 72 per cent. The regular recommended daily dose of folic acid is 400 mcg; if you’re pregnant, you should take 600 mcg. Folic acid can come from a multivitamin, supplement, or foods like eggs, legumes, and dark leafy greens.